Review: Path to Mnemosyne
Title: Path to Mnemosyne
Publisher: Hidden Trap
Platform(s): PS4, XBox One, Switch (reviewed)
Release: 4/15/2019 (Switch)
It's pronounced "ni-ˈmä-sə-nē" (the Greek goddess of memory), since I'm sure you were wondering. And as it turns out, the name won't be the only thing that's likely to leave you scratching your head about Path to Mnemosyne, a visually engaging, infinite zoom puzzle game.
"Calm down. You're here because you've chosen to remember," says the Michael Caine-esque narrator.
Path to Mnemosyne takes you on a journey through the mind of the nameless main character. To explore the strange, sometimes disturbing landscape, you can walk forward or backwards, or occasionally, shuffle left or right if the path allows it. This reorients the entire landscape to your new perspective.
Solve puzzles to recover memories (represented by glowing blue orbs), and maybe you can figure out why you are so lost.
The Tip & the Top
Visually this game is an eye candy treat. The imagery is minimalist, yet unique and engaging, and I really enjoyed the way it plays with perspective. Sound is used sparsely, and what is there is jarring, giving an unsettling effect and enhancing the creepy atmosphere.
A good variety of puzzles (patterns, matching, motion control, perspective, maze, etc) keep the game from growing stale, and I was always eager to find the next test. Each challenge can be solved either by methodical trial and error or by finding visual clues hidden throughout the game. Nothing here requires Mensa-level thinking, so you'll make good progress while still feeling like a smarty-pants.
The Flip & the Flop
In under two hours, I completed the entire game without ever breaking a sweat. Ultimately I found the puzzles to be too easy and too few. The only hint of challenge came in the final puzzle, but that's only because it involved flashing lights, and I wanted to solve it as quickly as possible before I had an aneurysm.
Additionally, I suppose it's silly to expect a concrete ending in game as abstract as this one, but the ending to this one is...I don't even know. From what I can tell, there's a bad ending (where you essentially run out of path and cannot continue) and a good ending. I got the good one, but I wish someone would explain it to me.
Final Grade: C
While I appreciate the creativity exhibited here, Path to Mnemosyne ultimately lacks depth. As a two hour game with no real replay value, I have a tough time recommending it for its current price of $9.99 (eShop).