What if someone knew your mind better than you did? The Swapper is an award-winning, narrative driven puzzle game set in the furthest reaches of space.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (3,620 reviews)
Release Date: May 30, 2013

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Recommended By Curators

"A beautiful puzzle game which involves using clones of yourself to traverse obstacles. But what mystery lies beyond? A gloomy, ambient experience."
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“I came away from The Swapper with nothing but amazement. From the first time you see the literally hand-crafted visuals until the final moment in the game, which is sure to give you pause for thought, you will be in complete awe.

Brilliant puzzles with even more brilliant solutions compliment the philosophical plotline, leaving an unforgettable experience unlike any other.”
10/10 – Destructoid

“The Swapper tempted me with ingenious puzzles, transported me to a fully realized science-fiction world, and made me ask questions about mortality and morality that few video games have ever dared to explore.

Very few puzzle games have ever managed to marry impeccable challenges with a mature storytelling quite like this – there's no fluff or extraneous content here, only a prime example of how to create a tight, unforgettable gaming experience.”
9.3 – IGN

“It didn’t take me long to fall in love with The Swapper; it continuously surprised and impressed me from its intriguing first moments to its fantastic ending.”
9.25 – Game Informer

“Think, rethink. Get stumped. Take a break. Go outside. Have some ice crea- wait, no. Pet a dog. Or maybe go for a stroll in the park, because that would- Oh god, now Swapper’s thought process has invaded your mind. You can’t escape.”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

Steam Big Picture

About This Game

What if someone knew your mind better than you did?

The Swapper is an award-winning, narrative driven puzzle game set in the furthest reaches of space.

The Swapper takes place in an isolated and atmospheric sci-fi world. Players wield an experimental device which allows them to create clones of themselves, swapping their entire consciousness into new bodies to overcome the challenges of the environment.

Key Features:

  • Think: Fiendishly designed puzzles with equally clever solutions that are never more than a few steps away.
  • Wonder: The art in The Swapper is constructed using clay models and everyday materials, which combine to create truly unique visuals in a detailed and atmospheric environment.
  • Discover: A powerful and thoughtful story, told through the game's environment with narrative design from Tom Jubert, the writer behind hits including Driver: San Francisco and Faster Than Light.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS:Windows XP SP3 or later, 64/32bit
    • Processor:Dual Core CPU (2.2+ GHz Dual Core CPU or better)
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:GeForce® 8800 or Radeon® HD4800 series, 512 MB of memory, OpenGL 3.0 support required
    • Hard Drive:1 GB HD space
    • Additional:Intel HD Graphics are not officially supported. But if you've got yourself a 3000 or better then there is a reasonable chance it will mostly/sorta work. No promises, but we've been working hard on it, at any rate.
    • OS:Snow Leopard 10.68 or later, 64/32bit
    • Processor:Dual Core CPU
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:Intel HD 3000 or better, 4000 or a dedicated GPU recommended, OpenGL 3.0 support required
    • Hard Drive:1 GB HD space
    • OS:Ubuntu 10.04 or 13.10, 64/32bit
    • Processor:Dual Core CPU (2.2+ GHz Dual Core CPU or better)
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:GeForce® 8800 or Radeon® HD4800 series, 512 MB of memory, OpenGL 3.0 support required
    • Hard Drive:1 GB HD space
    • Additional:Intel HD Graphics are not officially supported. But if you've got yourself a 3000 or better then there is a reasonable chance it will mostly/sorta work. No promises, but we've been working hard on it, at any rate.
Helpful customer reviews
55 of 58 people (95%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
24.8 hrs on record
Posted: January 14
Review greatly shortened due to length constraints

I just can't think of this game as a platfomer. There are no death traps, no enemies to avoid, no coins or baubles to collect... it's simply an adventure game that happens to have some platforms in it.

You hold a "swapping" device in your hands that has two abilities: First is the duplicate function. What this does is create exact replicas of you, and your replica(s) will mimic every move you make. You can have up to four duplicates at any given time. If they "die" you can create another to take its place, and when your duplicates touch you, they disappear, allowing you to make another. Second is the "swapping" beam. Zap any of your replicas with this beam to have your consciousness transferred to that body. The swapping beam has one more function, and I mention it only because I got completely stuck, having NO idea you could do this: If you are in freefall, you can use the beam to "push" yourself through space.

The game progresses through a series of puzzles based upon these abilities. There are obstacles in that the swapping device reacts differently around colored lights. For instance, you can create a duplicate within red light, but your swapping beam is completely blocked by the red. The opposite holds true within blue light, and so on.

The music sets the tone so beautifully, so perfectly, that you don't really notice it at first. Never distracting, I was more than once surprised to realize that not only was it was there, that it was lovely to listen to, as well. "Lovely?" you ask, "In an atmospheric psychological horror?" To that I say, "Absolutely!" Just go with it, you'll see what I mean when you play The voices are done incredibly well, never feeling stilted or out-of-place.

And that brings me to the story, that which binds the whole game together in this richly-woven tapestry. The story progresses in multiple ways. You will occasionally hear voices (... no, not that kind of "hearing voices"!) as you progress through the game, and, as mentioned, they are very well done. Next up are the terminals, which give you snippets of conversations and orders from the command of this place you're in. Lastly you have the thoughts of... something(s), which I will not give away.

When I first saw the graphics, I thought they looked blurry... fuzzy, even. It's amazing how differently you perceive things when you're actually playing the game yourself, and not just looking at screenshots or a video. Suffice to say that the graphics contribute to the overall feeling of the game. Somehow, The Swapper reminds me of John Carpenter's The Thing. No, there's no parasitic life form trying to assimilate and/or mutilate you, but those feelings... Cold. Alone. Uneasy. It is all of these and more.

This is truly a must-play game for anyone who enjoys a deeply environmental game with a powerful tale to tell... a tale whose full implications I have yet to digest. Better yet, this is a game that can be enjoyed even more upon subsequent play-throughs... And that is something I will be even more happy to do now that I know I missed some of the content my first time through.

Highly recommended!
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17 of 18 people (94%) found this review helpful
10.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 12
The Swapper is a beautiful game - I felt that when starting it for the first time. What I wasn't expecting was for it to draw me in so completely, after the matter of a few levels. The mechanics are pretty much what is described on the store page, that you can create a certain number of clones, and swap control between them. That's it. No unlocks, no level ups for harder puzzles. What you can do as you delve deeper into the empty space station, is what you've always been able to do. That's one thing I really admire about this game. It makes your brain unlock, your imagination of this simple tool unlock, instead of unlocking things for the tool itself.

Now back to my favorite aspect, the immersion of this game. There are no doubt many games of an abandoned site, be it a space station or historical site, et cetera. The Swapper, drew me in. I felt so utterly small, so alone. There are logs to be found as to what befell the previous occupiers of the station, but I did not feel hope. The quiet sounds, and large space station was definitely too hallow for one. For this one explorer. Or a few. You find some consciousnesses that are just those, thoughts floating in a great atmosphere. (Vague I know, but you'll see.) This game makes you think, mechanic wise, and story wise, yet it's not really trying to make you think about the "story", but more of all the implications.

Overall, this is an excellent, thought provoking game in execution, atmosphere, and puzzle mechanics. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and couldn't put it down.
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11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
8.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 29
======================================
The Swapper
Read on for the full review!
======================================

TL;DR:
The swapper is a phenomenal puzzler with an astounding ambience, atmosphere, sense of mystery, good voice acting, and tantalizing writing that everyone should own.

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Pros
+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.

Cons
-None

Neutral
+/-Placement of clones can occasionally be finicky.

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Introduction
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.

Gameplay
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.

Graphics
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.

Audio
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.

Conclusion
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!

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11 of 14 people (79%) found this review helpful
7.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 2
It is weird... Like, mindblowing... I sure enjoyed this... But... Still... 9/10 (The Swapper is not a game for everybody, it is highly for those of metaphysical interest)
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
8.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 15
A great, unique game that I thoroughly enjoyed playing right until the very end. It proved to be an excellent puzzle platform game with excellent puzzles, excellent gameplay, a good atmosphere, and an intrigueing story. The art style is unique, but very well done as I think it suits the game and it's atmosphere. And to further add to that, I believe the soundtrack to be something pretty nice that also suits the atmosphere and setting of the game as well, with takes place aboard a space station in space. The puzzles in this game are definitely noteworthy and something not to think of lightly. They provide quite a challenge. Not an impossible, frustrating challenge, but a good challenge that really gets you to actually think and want to push to get the puzzle done. I had my fair share of stumps where some puzzles took me quite awhile to figure out, but I managed them in the end. Adding on to the puzzles, I also found gameplay to be another great feature of this game as well. Basically, the main feature and what this game revolves around is the Swapper device, which enables you to make clones, swap with them, etc. It's something fresh and interesting brought to the table of game mechanics. The story should also not be taken lightly either. A story if looked into enough by paying attention to the game, collecting logs, and actually thinking about it, is something that's pretty deep, good, and thought-provoking. I know it did have an effect on my emotions, which is something I really appreciate when a video game is able to do that to me.

This is a game that definitely deserves a lot of praise. It's a great, beautiful game that was not only a lot of fun to play, but also appreciate things like it's story, philosophical-related stuff, atmosphere, and more. I can easily see myself coming back to this game to play again down the road and would have no issues at all with another playthrough of it. It took me about a solid seven hours to complete the game, which I think was a decent length. Overall, my hat goes off to this game. A game I have no problem recommending to other people, as I believe it will provide a good challenge with a fun, but rewarding experience. Kudos to The Swapper!
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