Superliminal is a first-person puzzle game from Pillow Castle Games that asks you to look at things from a new perspective, then changes all the rules about perspective on the fly and demands you adjust your thinking to fit how this new reality works.
The bulk of Superliminal’s puzzles deal with forced perspective, using your perspective on the situation to manipulate an object’s size or changing the environment in striking ways based on how your view of it changes as you move around.
Picking up objects and increasing/decreasing their size by manipulating your perspective on them never really gets old, even though it’s used quite a few times during the course of the game. This isn’t a one-trick pony game, however, and you’ll need to master a few more perspective games if you want to succeed.
At times you’ll feel like a genius, when you realize how you’re supposed to view a problem and solve a tricky puzzle in seconds. At other times you’ll feel like an idiot as you struggle with something that seems simple, and, perhaps, even like an even bigger idiot when you realize later that the solution was staring you in the face the entire time and was even more simple than you’d thought.
There’s a storyline here about perspective and understanding that your viewpoint, while it’s what you can see, isn’t always what’s happening. As a patient of Dr. Glenn Pierce, you’ll explore your subconscious within sleep therapy – or at least that’s what’s supposed to happen. In a Portal-like twist you quickly discover there’s more at play here, but – as with so much else in this game – that is, perhaps, also a matter of perception.
If you’re big on abstract thinking, Superliminal is going to give you a couple of hours of fun. If you prefer to see reality stay the way it is, this might not be for you.
What I Loved:
- some inspired puzzles using forced perspective
- well-written dialogue kept a story that could have fallen flat moving along
- mind-bending puzzle elements you’ve never seen before
- rewarding rush for figuring out tough puzzles
What I Liked:
- graphic style changes as plot changes, upping the tension
- didn’t overstay its welcome at about three hours long
What I Disliked:
- full exploration of some of the themes could have lengthened it without padding
- some ‘try random stuff until it works’ puzzles
What I Hated:
Superliminal is available now on Nintendo Switch, PC, PS4, and Xbox One (version reviewed using code provided by the publisher).