Back in March French publisher ARTE, in collaboration with Upian and Hiver Prod, announced a super unique looking new game called Unmaze. The story recounts the classic tale of Theseus and the Minotaur in Greek Mythology and has you playing as Ariadne who must try to guide both Theseus and Asterion out of the Labyrinth to safety. That in itself is a pretty cool premise, but Unmaze looks to do something really unique by utilizing your mobile device’s hardware. You see, Ariadne can only help one person at a time, and so any time she’s spending helping Theseus is time she’s not able to help Asterion and he just gets into more and more danger. The same is true of Theseus whenever she’s focused on helping Asterion.
So the game is really about trying to balance your time between them both, but the way you switch between who you’re helping is literally based on the lighting in your environment. Theseus is the “light" character and Asterion is the “dark" character and the game will use your device’s light sensor to determine which character you’re interacting with. Want to help Theseus? Play in a well-lit room. Want to help Asterion? Turn off the lights and head into darkness. It’s certainly a clever idea that ties into the storytelling nicely, but it remains to be seen if it will ultimately feel like a gimmick or just plain annoying to have to switch your own environmental lighting situation just to play the game properly. At any rate, I commend Unmaze for the neat idea! And today the developers have released a new trailer showing Unmaze in action and revealing the game’s release date.
As the trailer shows, Unmaze will be released on both iOS and Android devices on June 21st. Being such a unique gameplay concept and not knowing if its light-based gimmick will be enjoyable or not, it might be hard to plunk down cash upfront with these unknowns. Thankfully that won’t be an issue, as Unmaze will be free to download and will offer the first chapter to play through, with the full 6 chapter game available to unlock for a $3.99 in-app purchase. I think that is the right way to go as there will be no barrier to entry to trying out this unique style of game. If you want to ensure a front row seat to Unmaze’s debut, you can pre-order the iOS version on the App Store here or pre-register for the Android version on the Google Play Store here. I’m really looking forward to how Unmaze is received when it launches on June 21st.