Read on for the full review!
The swapper is a phenomenal puzzler with an astounding ambience, atmosphere, sense of mystery, good voice acting, and tantalizing writing that everyone should own.
+Gameplay: Precise, simple, engaging, and effective.
+Graphics: Beautiful and eerie. Good use of color/lighting.
+Audio: Qualitative, effective, also eerie.
+Music: Fantastic. Can be present or good background music.
+Atmosphere: You will feel the isolation and mystery.
+Animation: Very smooth.
+Presentation: The menus and font are both beautiful and minimal.
+/-Placement of clones can occasionally be finicky.
The Swapper is a puzzler game where you play a swapper, a swapper is a person who swaps places with clones, a clone is a person who is a copy of another person. Beyond that, not much is known about who you are in the beginning, or what those giant stone rocks called Watchers are, or even much about what the planet or facility you are at is for besides transporting said Watchers offworld for scientific research.
The gameplay in the swapper is downright clever, but features a few very simple mechanics that allow for a lot of depth considering, especially if you keep in mind how many controls there aren't. Most of your stay in The Swapper will be spent left and right clicking to make clones and take their place, and to undo a clone you only hae to touch it, pass a checkpoint, or kill it with gravity. The puzzles will often be sequence puzzles that revolve around beams of light that remove your ability to clone or swap with said clones in that area, although timing, boxes, and movement can definitely be involved. What gameplay there is that doesn't revolve around puzzles, primarily revolves around exploration or loregathering in a metroid fashion instead.
In The Swapper, every aspect of visual interest is masterfully handled, from the lighting, shading, detail, colors, atmosphere, and ambience. There's a major industrial vibe, with a lot of purples, blues, and yellows thrown in. Occasionally there will be a lush green area, and the scarcity makes it all the more beautiful.
I also have to give a shoutout to the menu systems, they're absolutely stunning and as minimal as can be, and I adore minimal styled anything. Really, though, in the end, The Swapper is a game where the graphics shine most when shined right into your eyes while playing, and you should definitely make sure this happens.
The audio in The Swapper is downright effective, and will be unsettling, mysterious, calming, and frantic at the exact moment a need arises. While the audio can be sparse at times, that's a good thing, because it remains all the more impactful due to the feeling of isolation, mystery, and silence it can help to provide.
In the end, The Swapper deserves 5 stars in every category, it runs well, plays great, and looks amazing. There is atmosphere and mystery in buckets, and it will never make your brain hurt too much, but will still give it a stretch. It's one of the more innovative puzzlers I've had the pleasure of playing, as well as one of the better indie games I've ever played. Due to the level of polish, I can easily recommend this to EVERYONE. Have fun!