Sudoku is unquestionably the pen and paper puzzle sensation of the last decade, but it’s starting to get old. With any puzzle game, the satisfaction of mastery is eventually replaced by the tedium of repetition.
That’s why we’re so happy to see Hexologic. This slick puzzler from developer MythicOwl is a bit like sudoku, and a bit like Picross, but it’s also a brand new take on the genre that looks and plays like a dream.
As you probably guessed from the name, Hexologic sees you filling hexagons, not squares. This apparently small change has a huge impact on the gameplay.
The aim is to put the right number of dots in each hexagon, from a choice of one, two, or three. Around the board are numbers indicating the total you need to reach, and you have to fill the lines of hexagons in such a way that they don’t interfere with the lines intersecting with them.
For instance, you might have to make up 15 dots across six hexagons. Easy, you might think. Why not just pop them in like this: 3, 2, 3, 1, 3, 3. But if the 1 in the middle needs to be a 3 to make the line coming the other way work, it’s back to the drawing board for you.
That’s the basic gameplay, but MythicOwl mixes it up across the game’s four worlds and 75 stages by adding fixed hexagons and mirror tiles that replicate themselves at different points on the board.
The four worlds of the game are gorgeously presented, with a visual style that’s reminiscent of Monument Valley and Guacamelee. You’ll work your way through a tranquil underwater zone, an atmospheric jungle, a sparkling desert, and a smoking castle among the clouds.