The Talos Principle is a first-person puzzle game in the tradition of philosophical science fiction. Made by Croteam, the creators of Serious Sam, and written by Tom Jubert (FTL, The Swapper) and Jonas Kyratzes (The Sea Will Claim Everything).
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (1,416 reviews)
Release Date: Dec 11, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"An adept and satisfying puzzle game with a narrative that requires a bit of player investment to yield its biggest rewards."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (38)

February 27

Croteam and The Talos Principle are going to GDC @San Francisco and PAX East @Boston!!!

Good news everybody! Croteam's big move starts tomorrow! We are going to GDC and PAX East!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu5zIMvfNfE

Independent Games Festival (IGF)
We’ll be attending this year’s GDC in San Francisco, where Talos Principle will be featured at IGF pavilion in Expo hall as one of the Independent Games Festival (IGF) finalists. As you probably know, we were nominated for 3 Independent Games Festival (IGF) awards – Seamus McNally Grand Prize, Excellence in Design and Audience Award. Hold your fingers crossed for The Talos Principle on March 4th!

PAX East in Boston
After GDC, we’ll head to PAX East in Boston, where you can find us at Devolver Digital’s booth as well as on Alienware stand. You can ask us questions, grab some t-shirts and goodies, play Talos, or just come to say hi – you are all welcome!

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February 26

Broforce - 10 Steam keys for our community bros!!!

The Talos Principle Steam community is quickly approaching milestone of 100.000 members! For this big milestone, besides all Serious Sam games and Shadow Warrior we decided add one more great indie game into our community giveaway!

Game is BROFORCE!
http://store.steampowered.com/app/274190/
Team up with up to 4 bros and save the world, because freedom is not a joke! Enjoy humor, over-the-top action and CoOp with other bros.

We will award 10 Steam keys for this thrilling game to some of you when our Steam community grows to 100.000 members.

Check giveaway progress on following link:
-- About Disciples of The Talos Principle: Community Game Giveaway --

IMPORTANT - prove you are human!
For this unannounced surprise game giveaway we will bend the rules and give five out of ten Broforce keys to some of you who leave comment below this announcement! In comment prove you are human, not AI.

As always, if you want you can help spread the news about The Talos Principle by inviting your friends to The Talos Principle official Steam group and together with them enjoy rewards that we prepared in our giveaway!

If you want to find other exciting titles published by ultimate indie publisher - Devolver Digital, check this link -- Devolver Digital games on Steam --

Thanks for your time and your support!

416 comments Read more

Reviews

“The Talos Principle is going to be something very, very special for you.”
9.5/10 – Jim Sterling (Jimquisition)

“The Talos Principle is an absolute joy to play.”
9/10 – Gamespot

“One of the best games of the year.”
4.5/5 – PCWorld

Just Updated

The Talos Principle - Update 221394

Build 221394 for The Talos Principle is released.
If you have previously opted into public beta, you already have this.

Here are the changes:

New features:
- Added Japanese voiceovers.

Bug fixes:
- Fixed a crash when opening credits before playing anything.
- Fixed an issue where performance settings would sometimes be reset on game start.
- QRs are now decoded and displayed even if HUD is turned off.
- Fixed several minor issues with game mechanics.
- Fixed numerous small visibility, light and geometry issues in various places.
- Several fixes and improvements on the autotest bot.
- Significantly improved French translation.
- Several localization improvements for all languages.

Linux/OSX:
- Screen saver will no longer activate while playing the game on Linux.
- Added Linux config file for PS4 controller.

About This Game

The Talos Principle is a philosophical first-person puzzle game from Croteam, the creators of the legendary Serious Sam games, written by Tom Jubert (FTL, The Swapper) and Jonas Kyratzes (The Sea Will Claim Everything).

As if awakening from a deep sleep, you find yourself in a strange, contradictory world of ancient ruins and advanced technology. Tasked by your creator with solving a series of increasingly complex puzzles, you must decide whether to have faith or to ask the difficult questions: Who are you? What is your purpose? And what are you going to do about it?

Features:
  • Overcome more than 120 immersive puzzles in a stunning world.
  • Divert drones, manipulate laser beams and even replicate time to prove your worth - or to find a way out.
  • Explore a story about humanity, technology and civilization. Uncover clues, devise theories, and make up your own mind.
  • Choose your own path through the game's non-linear world, solving puzzles your way.
  • But remember: choices have consequences and somebody's always watching you.

Sigils of Elohim



Sigils of Elohim is a free mini-game prelude to Croteam’s first-person puzzler The Talos Principle that challenges players to solve dozens of challenging sigil puzzles under the watchful eye of Elohim.

Acquire items and relics in Sigils of Elohim on PC, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android mobile that transfer over to The Talos Principle on PlayStation 4, PC, Mac, Linux and Android K1.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/321480/

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP 32-bit (with service pack 3)
    • Processor: Dual-core 2.0 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX 10 class GPU with 512MB VRAM (nVidia GeForce 8600 series, AMD Radeon HD 3600 series, Intel HD 4000 series)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 5 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX9.0c Compatible Sound Card
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7 64-bit
    • Processor: Quad-core 3.0 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX 11 class GPU with 1GB VRAM (nVidia GeForce 480 GTX, AMD Radeon HD 5870)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX9.0c Compatible Sound Card
    Minimum:
    • OS: OS X version Leopard 10.5.8, Snow Leopard 10.6.3
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.2 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce GT 9600M/320M 512MB VRAM, AMD Radeon HD 4670 512MB VRAM (Intel integrated GPUs are not supported!)
    • Hard Drive: 5 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: OS X version Snow Leopard 10.6.3 or later
    • Processor: Intel Quad Code 3.2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce 480 GTX 1GB VRAM, AMD Radeon HD 5870 1GB VRAM (Intel integrated GPUs are not supported!)
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Linux Ubuntu 12.04
    • Processor: Dual-core 2.2 GHz
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce 8600/9600GT 512MB VRAM, ATI/AMD Radeon HD2600/3600 512MB VRAM
    • Hard Drive: 5 GB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL Compatible Sound Card
    • Additional Notes: OpenGL: 2.1 or higher
    Recommended:
    • OS: Linux Ubuntu 12.04
    • Processor: Quad-core 3.2 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: nVidia GeForce 480 GTX 1GB VRAM, ATI/AMD Radeon HD 5870 1GB VRAM
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB available space
    • Sound Card: OpenAL Compatible Sound Card
    • Additional Notes: OpenGL: 2.1 or higher
Helpful customer reviews
126 of 140 people (90%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
18.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 1
A computer terminal in the game asked me why I wanted so much to prove I'm human. I spend like 10 minutes thinking, unable to answer.
Thought this was just puzzles, ended up on one of the most philosophical rides a game has ever taken me. 10/10
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27 of 30 people (90%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
48.4 hrs on record
Posted: February 1
Buy this game.
This is one of the most interesting and entertaining puzzle/adventure games I've ever played. It got everything: interesting mechanics and puzzles, engagind story with multiple (and meaningful) endings, tons of secrets and easter eggs. I just couldn't play other games until I fully beat it. You can even indirectly interact with your Steam friends in singleplayer!
This game has a lot to say to you, it's surprisingly full of philosophical themes that forced me to question my own reality. I got seriously scared when the game managed to correctly construct my phsycological profile.
The only real downside is the lack of replay value (except for achievment hunters).
I recommend The Talos Principle game to all fans of Puzzles and even Adventures. You won't regret it, the game is well worth its money.
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18 of 19 people (95%) found this review helpful
32.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 5
Easily the most thought-provoking game I've ever played. I enjoyed the story and philosophy much more than the gameplay. Although the core mechanics are solid, it felt like the game was too long. The sheer number of puzzles felt tedious at times.

The story is interesting and does a good job of revealing itself at a good pace, always keeping you curious and trying to figure out your character's purpose, the world itself and the story of why it was created. I was pleasantly surprised by the ending.

The game foreshadows issues and ideas around artificial intelligence that could potentially become very real in the next century or so, and for a game that's very impressive. Ultimately how much you take away from this game depends on how much you know and care about AI and philosophy, but I thought it was awesome.

9/10
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14 of 15 people (93%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
29.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 14
We have a winner here people! This is one of the best games i have EVER played. I believe it's a must-have for every fan of the puzzle genre, Croteam did an outstanding job with this one. You can see from the very beginning how much they cared about their game, how much they wanted it to succeed. This is nothing like the uninspired, unoptimized cash-grabbing console ports we are used to nowadays.

But let me correct myself. This is not just a game, it is an experience. The talos principle will make you question your existence, your purpose in life. Even if you aren't really into philosophy, it will make you go look up some quotes of famous philosophers.
Every aspect of it is superb, the riddles, the visuals, the atmosphere, the music, everything works out.
Don't expect it to hold your hand though. The puzzles may seem easy peasy in the beginning but as you progress they will become harder and harder. There are some really difficult ones later in the game, so get ready for the challenge!

In conclusion, i can't recommend it enough. This is a masterpiece. I bought it at full price but it was worth it. No regrets!
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 23
One of the best games released last year that I have played. Not only does it make you think while solving the puzzles the story and philosophies keep you thinking as well. I highly recommend it to everyone who enjoys a game that makes you want to think about your choices.

Its also a very pretty game. ;)
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
98.9 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!

"The Talos Principle" is one of the most enjoyable and rewarding gaming experiences I've EVER had and I've been playing video games since the Atari 2600 days. There is a reason why "The Talos Principle" is a hit among critics and the player reviews are "Overwhelmingly Positve." This is truly a new classic.

NOTE: If you think you might get this game, I'd recommend against watching online video reviews and looking at Steam screenshots. They are both highly likely to contain spoilers and inadvertent puzzle hints, both minor and major. I only played the demo going into the full game and I feel the experience was better for it.

This is a first person, sci-fi themed puzzler in which the player, an artificial intelligence, is left to complete puzzles by using a series of tools that are introduced throughout the game. The first tool is the Jammer, a tool that jams electronic devices and force fields. Another tool connects to and aims laser beams. You'll also learn that tools can be used in combination, keeping the progression interesting. Solving a puzzle rewards the player with a sigil (tetromino) which are then used as puzzle pieces to unlock new areas when arranged correctly in puzzle mini-games.

The only conversational contact the player has is with another AI program that often presents itself at computer terminals as the game progresses. The player is also, through communicating at the terminals and reading information displayed on them, left to ponder the role of the disembodied voice known as "Elohim", as well as the meaning of life, consciousness, being human, being alive, free will, and the afterlife.

The game itself is solid. Easy and tight controls. Very nice music, sound effects, and voicework. Clean, often beautiful graphics. Intelligent writing. No profanity or violence. Menus with many options like FOV, character speeds, FPS display, time display (something I never used as I chose to take my time), etc. Basically, I found the setting menus to be thorough.

Many have compared this to the Portal games, which I consider high praise. While both offer clever puzzles and a high quality experience, "The Talos Principle" only rarely depends on any sort of physical dexterity. With those few puzzles that do require quickly timed movement, even the most casual of players shouldn't have any issues whatsoever.

While the presentation and story are high quality, it's really about the puzzles. What makes them so satisfying? First, puzzles do not need to be finished in an exact order. Leave one alone for a while that you are having trouble with and try again later. I found it interesting how I'd find myself struggling with a puzzle but after a day or two, the solution would become clear. It was almost "scary" when realizing how hard at work my subconscious was. I would also think about certain puzzles when not playing and come up with new things to try out. I found myself overthinking many times when the solution was much simpler. Also, just when I thought I had a handle on a "recipe" that certain types of puzzles used, the game would throw me a curveball, forcing me to deviate from previous "patterns".

Some puzzles, even of the harder variety, can be figured out quickly depending on the player's frame of mind, while "easier" puzzles (those without numerous elements) can be trickier. You know the puzzles are good when you find yourself wanting to do "just one more" before ending a session. And puzzles can often be completed in more than one way. I found out later that some solutions I used were much much more complicated than they needed to be. This dynamic of overthinking vs. underthinking is what helped make my time with "The Talos Principle" so interesting, as well as thinking out a solution before acting vs. using a lot of trial and error at other times.

This game also encourages and rewards exploration. There are stars to collect, which unlock additional content in the form of more puzzles and ultimately an additional ending choice (there's a main ending and two possible side endings). These stars are often "puzzles within puzzles" and gathering them is rewarding and can be quite challenging. For example, a star may be within a puzzle and behind a door (force field). It is up to the player to figure out how to reconfigure his/her solution so that an additional door can be opened. There is also an ample amount of "Easter eggs" to find, many of which are interactive and well worth seeking out. Many are references to other games, like Portal or Papers Please. Pink Floyd is honored with one as well.

Keep your eyes wide as you traverse the puzzles and worlds. Even just finding ways to exploit the simulation is fun, for example, finding a way to climb over the outer walls of a puzzle and into "out of bounds" areas (where there are some Easter eggs to find). Or "breaking" a puzzle by finding an "unintended route" to the finish by climbing over a wall, or walking above one. (This accounts for a lot of my game time).

"The Talos Principle" should appeal to a wide variety of players. I spent about 80 hours on my first playthrough and a less thorough playthrough will of course take less time. I then replaid for 100% achievements (which I usually don't do). I suspect that a lot of people finishing this in a little over 20 hours are not doing everything (reading files, getting all stars/doing the puzzles they unlock, looking for easter eggs, and probably consulting walkthroughs). You can play this game as you want. Complete the puzzles in order or don't. Do them fast or slow. Solve star puzzles or don't. Don't read every piece of information at the terminals if you can't be bothered. Look closely for Easter eggs or don't worry about them at all. Try out the side endings or don't.

"The Talos Principle" is well recieved among critics and players. In an era when games offering the same old thing are launched onto best seller lists via pre-orders, it's nice to have another good option to play something from developers who are obviously passionate about their game and took the time and energy to create something meaningful and different. The support is very good with developers active on the Steam forums should anyone have issues and updates have been released to fix and add things (like an added special settings menu for "motion sickness" and a speed time function). The community is also very helpful.

NOTE: The demo is also good, yet only a taste of the full game. It ofters a solid introduction to gameplay and some clever puzzles. There is even another free game called the "Sigils of Elohim" that is made of tetromino puzzles. Solving them will reward you with codes that are then entered into the menu of "The Talos Principle" for bonuses. These do not change the core game at all but, for instance, you can get stars with these codes.

All the regular stars will still be in the game to find. If you get the codes for bonus stars (three in total), you will start with three stars in the full game. So, you'll be free to leave three stars unfound if you wish and still receive the bonus content for finding all of them. In other words, if you start with the bonus stars and then go on to find every star in the game, you will finish with an extra three stars.

PS: If you get and finish the game, check out my screenshots if you want (NOT before you play) and give them a bump if you like. Some hint at additional "challenges".
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
35.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 6
Wow. Just gotta say this game is truely something else. There are some powerfull ideas to think about in this game. Pretty satisfying for me. The ending I got was pretty good; I've read there are at least three. I'd say whatever the price, it's worth it. You've gotta be into Philosophy and First-Person Puzzle Adventure games.

Other games I like in this genre: Antichamber, FRACT OSC, Kairo, Portal/2, and The Stanley Parable.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
29.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 28
Without a doubt one of the best games I have played, ever. The basic mechanics and puzzles alone are fantastic if you're not someone who really cares about story or concept. BUT, if you enjoy digging in to what this game has to offer, you're in for one of the most amazing experiences any form of media or art can provide.
They have managed to seamlessly blend so many wild concepts and ideas, from philosophy to theoretical physics to religion to morals and morality.
The puzzles alone are enough to fry your brain, but when you dive into the deep end of this game, your brain is in for an all-out meltdown! If any of th#%%^^&233232 [error] you will enjoy this game. Totally worth %21]missing]12^&55[6854 aying full price.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
28.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
10/10.


Except for the random reflector in the tree.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
20.0 hrs on record
Posted: February 16
Honestly the best single player game in my entire life. None of the other games i played and finished gave me same pleasure and feelings as this one does. 10/mother♥♥♥♥ing 10. I even thought i will never ever be impressed after Portal 2 or HL but, i was wrong as ♥♥♥♥ as it seems. I'm even sad that i finished this awesome game only in ♥♥♥♥ing little 20 hours. If you like riddle type-mysterious games as i do, go for it.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
13.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 6
rating: worth buying at full price
score: 10/10 - masterpiece
similar games: The Swapper, Portal 2
target audience: fans of puzzle games, narrative games

WARNING: The Talos Principle is the first game EVER where I felt motion sickness. There are many options like an FOV-Slider, disabling View Bobbing and third person view to prevent this. For me personaly not using the sprint button was the best way (because sprinting is extremely fast in this game, for good reason).

Croteam, the devs of Serious Sam, deliver their masterpiece with "The Talos Principle", a game which does everything right, where you literaly see how much effort they put into this game, how much detail, how much love. Talos Principle is one of those games where you can safely say that it belongs to the best this artform has to offer. It´s a game only an indie developer with a very high budget could make. The Talos Principle is my game of the year 2014.

Gameplay
The base gameplay of Talos is classic puzzling. You have many different puzzle elements and you have many different levels. Like in "The Swapper" you can choose which puzzles you want to solve first, it has a more open level design than games like Portal 2. This means if you are stuck at a puzzle you can just leave it and come back later and because of this the game has a really good flow, because you have always something to do.
Most puzzles are in small areas, so you can quickly understand what you are supposed to do and there wasnt a single puzzle in the game where I had no idea what to do and I never had to look up something on a walkthrough. However there are sometimes really big puzzles where you first think "what the heck am I supposed to do", but these puzzles are designed in a way that at the beginning of the puzzles there is only 1 or 2 things you can do which dont really challenge you, but these things are there so you get used to the enviroment and dont feel completely lost. And these big puzzles are the really difficult ones where you feel really smart after you beat them.
The puzzles themselves are designed extremely well and their difficulty increases slowly but surely.
There are many more things you can do in this game, but those shouldnt affect your decision to purchase this game.

Narrative
Even if the game doesnt have a huge narrative, constant cutscenes and tons of dialogue, I was always motivated to continue and eager to find out what this game was about. Not only is there a big mystery which you try to solve, in between you are confronted with philosophical questions where you have tons of choices to answer which lead to really interesting dialogues and I was thinking and guessing till the end of this game. It really makes you think, I mean REALLY, especially if you are someone who is interested in these kind of questions. If you are not though, these questions might get a little annoying at the end, but the nice thing is you dont have to do any of this.
This game has multiple endings and its one of the very very few games where having multiple endings makes sense, because they are not simply 3 different paths and you choose one. They are all connected and even if you get one ending, the others still matter in your story. At the end it was satisfying, interesting, thought provoking but also intense, even epic to a degree and it was nice to see how they created a climax for a puzzle game that works not only for its story but also for its gameplay.
There werent many voice actors for this game, but all of them did a great job, but there is also a lot of reading involved in this game which wasnt a problem for me and Im usually someone who skips notes and letters and stuff you find in other games.

Aesthetics
"Wow this game is beautiful". thats what I thought many many times while playing this. Every "land" has its own theme which not only looks beatiful, but also fits to the "super"-theme of the game. What I mean is that these themes are not chosen randomly which they appear to be at first. Especially the conflict between the theme of the enviroment and the theme of the puzzle elements. This was something which I didnt like about the game at first, but after you get used to and understand that it makes sense this way I appreciated it.
This game is not only fun to play, fun to listen to and fun to explore but its also simply fun to look at, its gorgeous.

Soundtrack
Very beatiful and fitting soundtrack. There is one track for every "land" and the tracks feel like they have been chosen very carefully. You will hear them a lot but they never get annoying, they actually make the puzzles even more fun because you can listen to great music while thinking about the solution to a puzzle or arguing about philosophical questions. Really impressive.

Graphics
The graphics of this game are also really impressive. There are no loading screens, only when you start the game, you have EXTREMELY huge view distance, performance is extremely good on maximum settings, though my PC might be overkill. Almost every texture is tesselated which looks so good and there is some extremely impressive scenery, like really impressive where you will just say "Wow.".
The only gripe I have are the animations of the character you are controlling, they are a little bit stiff but when you play in first person mode (which I recommend) then you wont notice this anyway.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
29.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 23
The Talos Principle managed to sneak in at the last minute and become my game of the year.

That is no small feat...

If you enjoyed the Portal series, there is a damn good chance you will love this game.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
35.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 7
10/10
I didn't know what to expect going in, and boy was I pleasantly surprised. Aside from fun and increasingly difficult puzzles like I was hoping to find, the game content actually brought out my emotions and triggered a series of thought provoking topics that I couldn't help but chat with friends about outside the game.
I highly recommend getting this game, and taking your time reading all the content along the journey!
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
42.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 8
The Talos Principle is a good game for people who were aching for a real puzzle challenge. With over 120 varied puzzles this game delivers for its hefty price of 45 euros. A little warning though, dedication is required. Because this game uses only a limited set of elements to create its challenges, puzzles may start to look a lot alike before you're even half way. It actually caused me to burn out on the game at first. There were two things that kept me playing.

First, experimenting, exploration and trying to break the physics of the game is greatly rewarded. I have a knack for doing silly stuff in games when i'm burned out on the main and side quests. running, jumping and fooling around. Here I started to mess with the jump platforms. Could I jump over the walls of the puzzle area? Could I take stuff from the area with me? What would could I do with that? Surprisingly this goofing payed off. This game rewarded my 'efforts' by reaching extra sigils and easter eggs. It's great fun and adds to being really engaged in the story, because the exploration and easter eggs give it more depth.

The story, and the way you experience it, was the next thing to keep my attention. I really like games that dare to pose questions to me as a player. Questions like for example: What makes someone human? or what is a soul? or what is time? It makes the game 'stick' for me, because thinking about it really really engages me more in the protagonist of the game. Here this works perfectly. You awake as the 'program/soul' of a clueless robot trying to find its way and purpose. Robots are build for a task, right? But what is that task in this world without humans? What happened here anyway?
The experience of the game adds to the story. The tale of finding your purpose is one of many choices you have to make in 'life' and the feeling that comes with it. A feeling of never knowing you chose right. The Elohim voiceover (brilliantly done), messages and q&a's though the computer terminals and QR-codes were constantly trying to push me around. And when even the puzzles are trying to trick you, you know something is not right. I was always suspicious of who I could trust and what the results would be. Through this concept I really was engaged in the journey of the robot and it's search.

Are you looking for a game that puzzles you in more ways than one? This is it.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
20.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 31
About 20 hours to complete The Talos Principle. Actually felt a lot longer. Overall, I'd give it a recommendation if you think you could dig a little philosophical history mixed in with your puzzle action.

"About 20 hours" was arrived at after completing all of the official green, yellow, and red sigil puzzles on my own, and then following a guide to pick up the roughly half of the star sigils that I'd missed, as well as following a guide for the giant tower's puzzles. I cleared the "messenger" puzzles on my own, but I still haven't cleared the grey sigil puzzles. By volume, I'd say I solved 70% of the content on my own, followed a guide for 15%, and have another 15% to come back for.

The Talos Principle places you in the role of an artificial intelligence that has been placed in a world filled with puzzles. You're challenged to solve all the puzzles, with the promise of eternal life as a reward for successfully doing so. As you explore, the game exposes you to a variety of western philosophical ideas and ultimately gives you a brief primer on the history and development of western philosophy, more-or-less starting with the titular Talos Principle: that it does not matter what the philosopher believes, they cannot survive without their blood (a materialist argument). Along the way, the game also challenges the player to argue their own philosophical outlook, albeit from a prepared list of common ideas, and sadly even the "expanded" list of options is painfully lacking in nuance. That's the risk of asking someone what they believe.

As for the puzzles, I found them to be pretty enjoyable and well-balanced. The color-coded difficulty rating was pretty spot-on. The tools were varied and techniques for using them were applied very creatively. The puzzles rarely fell prey to irreversible mistakes, as well, which I found most pleasantly surprising; I appreciate how difficult that is to do, and there were very few puzzles I felt I needed to reset due to a mistake. The puzzles also seemed very resilient to cheating and exploitation. That means most of the puzzles have effectively one solution, but the "A ha!" moment from figuring them out is delightful.

In a few exceptional cases I felt like the "puzzle verbs" were unintuitive, and I only discovered them by accident or by following a guide to one of the star sigils. One generally does not think to balance a box on a sphere, for instance. I also developed a specific hate-boner for the hovering mines, but I feel that's a matter of personal preference, as I found them to be extremely nerve-wracking (there's even a mine-based puzzle in the game named "Nerve-Wracking").

In conclusion, this was a much better game than the highly-pretentious name and title art suggested, and now that I've completed the "quick and dirty" ending as well as the "true" ending, I plan to take my time finishing the grey sigil puzzles to get the "bonus on the side" ending.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
7.1 hrs on record
Posted: February 7
This game definitely a water drop in a dessert

A full polished game which perfect on every aspect with dev really committed into perfection and gentleman attitudes. My advice, open your mind and enjoy every moment without rush. This is lifetime experience, once you are done you know you are experience something brilliant in your life. You wish you can erase your memory to experience it again
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
14.8 hrs on record
Posted: February 21
This game is too freaking good. In a world where all my gaming time is almost all spent on dota 2, this game made my flame rekindle for solo gaming. The world is beautiful, the voice acting is great, is looks amazing, puzzles are fun, challenging, welcoming for casual, with greater rewards for more hardcore puzzle solvers. I grabbed it at full price and, for such a high quality game I recommand everyone who wants it to encourage the devs and buy it full price, it is 120% worth it. And if you are left wanting more like I was, because it was so addicting, workshop and the community will help you with that.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
35.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 22
After a stunning year of game releases in 2013, I was disappointed with the few notable releases in 2014. Well, just in time to save it came The Talos Principle. This is the best game I've played in a long while. The game mechanics are very well polished, the graphics are beautiful, and the puzzles hit the perfect balance of challenging but doable (and there are over a hundred of them!). The best part, though, is the story. I didn't expect to get clobbered with a powerful lesson in philosophy while gaming. Once I started, I was obsessed with it and hardly played anything else until I completed it. The ending was not only satisfying, it kind of blew me away.

It took me 32 hours to complete the game, and I expect to spend several more finding all the secrets, so it's well worth paying full price. I can't recommend this game enough! This is the best game of 2014.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
56.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 23
I adore this game, and have recommended it to more people than any game I can recently recall having played. (And I played through repeatedly). The puzzles are engaging, relatively intuitive, all that good stuff; you stay for the existential philosophy. Never before have I wanted an IBM-esque computer terminal to reaffirm that I am a person. Graphic beauty aside (and it is there aplenty), this game is mind-blowing.

Seriously. Go for it.

Frogs are people too ;)
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
33.2 hrs on record
Posted: February 8
Summary: In spite of its flaws, The Talos Principle is my GOTY of 2014 and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys puzzles and games with a fair bit of quality reading. If you are prone to depression however, you might want to avoid this game due to it touching on some pretty dark existential topics.


Strengths:
  • Satisfying amount of puzzles, including a fair number of difficult ones - which was something I desperately wanted from Portal 2. Once the average puzzle difficulty ramps up, the game becomes a chain of "Eureka!" moments that remains satisfying until the end.
  • Game mechanics and interactions with the world are taught implicitly, by giving you simple puzzles where using a mechanic for the first time is the only way to proceed. Some of the hardest puzzles, especially secret ones, rely on figuring out interactions you have never seen or used up to that point.
  • Most of the lore is delivered as text on in-game terminals and messages left between the various characters. All of it is well written and very immersive. Not quite Transhumanism 101, but a lot of food for thought that inspired me to pursue further reading.
  • You get to debate philosophy with a DOS prompt.
  • An intriguing mystery at the core of the game that keeps you interested until the very end. Who created you? What is your purpose in this world? Who created this world and why? What happened to the creators? What is the Forbidden Tower that disappears into the clouds of the overworld, and why does the local equivalent of God explicitly forbid you from ascending it?
  • Easily 20 hours of gameplay if you do all the mainline puzzles and skimp through the in-game text, 30+ if you read into the lore and aim for the extra-difficult hidden puzzles that often require bending the rules of the game.
  • Many puzzles have more than one solution, including borderline exploits that involve smuggling pieces from one puzzle area into another with clever climbing. Many of the obscure "exploits" have been discovered during beta testing and left in on purpose, or even explicitly acknowledged by the developers. Finding ways to "break" the game without resorting to glitches is quite satisfying and adds replay value.
  • Excellent graphics that nonetheless scale down even to 10 year old hardware.
  • Great soundtrack that is enjoyable to listen to even outside the game.
  • I have played this for 30+ hours on Linux and Windows and have not encountered a single bug, glitch or crash.
  • Day 1 launch on Linux and OSX. The Linux port is fantastic.
  • Free demo that gives a good taste of the game, available more than a month before release.

Flaws:
  • The game has excellent puzzles and excellent writing, but the two do not really compliment each other. The story is contained almost entirely in optional texts, that can be skipped completely. The core gameplay - solving puzzles - does not blend with or contribute to the plot.
  • The game's level structure is a bit...archaic and systematical. There is a main overworld, containing three hubs, each containing up to nine puzzle levels, each containing between three and five puzzles, each in its own self-enclosed area. You know exactly where you're going to go and what you're going to do next, and you know where exactly the game will end. It's not a good structure for a story-heavy game.
  • The puzzle levels are much, much larger than the puzzle areas they contain. While each level usually has 1-2 secret puzzles and 1-3 easter eggs, most of the playable area contains nothing interesting to find or look at, which demotivates searching for secrets and makes the game suffer from Negative Possibility Space.
  • The philosophical debates with Milton, the "serpent" residing in the DOS terminals of the game's "garden of Eden", feel like they have been cut short during development. Some of the questions he poses are difficult and cannot be given simple answers, yet you must choose from simple answers - which, in turn, enables the "snake" to cheerfully dismantle their naivety and/or inconsistency.
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