Excellent and completely unique mixture of arcade and puzzle elements to create an extremely addictive game, for those prepared to give it a chance.
Strange Attractors is an oddly addictive mixture of arcade and puzzle game elements. The game is played out on a rectangular playing field and you control the game with only one key (the spacebar). The aim of the game is to get your ‘ball’ from the bottom end of the playing field to the top (through the ‘exit’ warp). You do not control your ball in the traditional sense. Whenever you press the spacebar, your ball is attracted towards to the nearest passing metallic sphere (for example if you hold down the spacebar, your ball will stick to the nearest metallic sphere and won’t let go, whereas if you hold down the spacebar just long enough, your ball will bounce off the nearest sphere with a good deal of force, propelling you either up or down the playing field).
Neither the graphics nor animation can be faulted. The graphics are dark, crisp and quite stylish, with a rather unique look to them and the animation is superb. Both of these elements compliment the gameplay superbly and make the game all the more playable.
The soundtrack in this game is rather unique: at times it is fast and other times slow, at times eerie and at other times oddly relaxing. The sound effects in the game are superb and once you are fully absorbed in the game, you will notice the sound effects much more then the music. The game itself is neither fast nor slow-paced. There are generous time limits given to complete each level, which gives the game a certain light sense of urgency. The speed at which levels are completed will vary wildly due to the random nature of the way that the game is played. A level may be completed quickly on one occasion and might seem frustratingly difficult the next time. The odd pacing of the soundtrack matches the style of gameplay perfectly.
The gameplay, as described above, is quite random. A couple of levels into the game and you will see metal spheres floating all over the level, which makes the ‘attracting’ feature all the more random. At times you might plan to attract to one sphere and end up attracted to another, which has a negative effect, rather than a positive one (sending you down the playing field instead of up). Other times, due to a lucky bounce, you will zip through, what looked like a hard level, a lot faster then you had planned. The next time you play, the same levels will play out completely differently – a fair amount of luck and chance come into play here. In an odd respect, this is an attractive element to the game and gives it almost endless replayability. That isn’t to say that the levels don’t become increasingly more difficult in layout on a general scale. It all just adds to the depth and challenge of the game. The physics, which the gameplay relies on rather heavily, are spot on. When your ball bounces it feels real, as if you are playing a decent pinball simulation. Bear in mind that I have not mentioned every last detail concerning the gameplay. The surprises in the game are many and varied – enjoy them.
It is hard to say which type of game player this game will appeal to. Some maybe turned off when they first start the game (admittedly the gameplay does take some getting used to), others might be turned off by the general style or the fact that it almost feels like a random pinball machine, rather then a fully fledged puzzle or arcade game. Personally, I recommend that people give this game a chance – the learning curve is not as severe as it might first seem and even if it was, I would still say it was worth it. Highly recommended.
This game is weird.
That's nearly all I have to say about it - I have never seen any game like this. The main review already says everything, but I just felt like inserting a comment.
I don't like puzzle games, but after a few posts in the forum about Strange Attactors, I downloaded it without any special thought.
I'm not really addicted, because the gameplay is a bit too unpredictable for my taste, but still... an awesome game.
Download this - even if you'll delete it after the 2nd try.
Boss Heads + Weirdness + Magnetism + randomisation= Bliss.
This formula describes Strange Attractors, and is a classic in the making (of freeware games).