Figment is an adventure game set in the mind of a man recovering from a traumatic experience. The main character, a worn out ex-hero by the name of Dusty has to shake off the rust and reluctantly save the day when his property gets stolen by a nightmare. Accompanied by his chatty avian sidekick, Piper, Dusty must navigate the perilous depths of the mind in order to free it from fear–and more importantly, get his stuff back!
The world of Figment is split into zones that you’ll need to solve puzzles to advance through. Many of Figment’s puzzles are standard fare, requiring you to move an object from point A to point B or to activate a series of switches. They aren’t mind-wracking, for the most part, and shouldn’t take the average gamer more than a few minutes to solve. What I liked most about them was their persistent difficulty. No puzzle seemed too easy and none of them made me want to chuck my controller–a level of fairness you don’t often see in puzzle games. The only real difficulty with puzzles was the inability to accurately select between two objects that were close together. On more than one occasion I found myself interacting with the wrong object and this became frustrating when dealing with a time sensitive puzzle.
Figment earns its adventure distinction with the inclusion of combat. Dusty is able to perform a combo of slashes as well as a charged spin attack. Enemies, though infrequent, will require you to learn their attack patterns, lest you take damage. Boss fights are a lot of fun. These multi-phase pain in the you-know-where mix in puzzle solving with timing to create a challenging and intuitive fight. These also boil down to learning an attack pattern and figuring out how best to count.
Figment’s writing is great. Characters are fully voice acted and there are jokes aplenty as well as poignant messages that are food for thought. Dusty, our anti-hero, is reticent to help anyone but himself at first, but his evolution into a true hero figure is a joy to observe. Despite this being an indie title, the voice acting was top notch and every character was voiced with love. This further immersed me into this whimsical world and I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of things.
Figment’s presentation is absolutely gorgeous. It’s strange and quirky and it makes sense within the premise of being a mindscape. Thematically, Figment is very strong–from the synapse batteries used to power objects to the visible separation of right brain and left brain. The brain puns might not hit home with everyone, but for two beings who call the brain home, I felt they made complete sense. What impressed me most about Figment’s imagery was the symbolism of its level design. Figment begins with a car accident and by the end, you come full circle with broken glass, scattered belongings, and the blaring of alarms of emergency responders.
You can’t build atmosphere without music and Figment completely delivers on this front. The BGM is catchy and upbeat for the most part and objects in the level oftentimes sync up with the beat or the melody for that extra bit of amazing. What really impressed me was the original music the nightmare bosses belch out when you face them. Not only were the songs catchy, they fit into the nightmare’s theme and overall personality. I couldn’t help but smile and prolong our fight with the hopes of hearing another refrain and that’s not something I often find myself doing.
Sadly, Figment can be played through in a single sitting by the very dedicated. There are collectables that exist in the form of memories that flesh out the man that owns the mind you aim to save, which may add an hour or so to your total play time. There’s really no level of replayability, unfortunately, due to the linear nature of the game, but I’d honestly play again just to hear the nightmare’s songs.
Falling just shy of an instant-classic thanks to a few technical issues, Figment is a delight to play through. Though its run-time is relatively short, collectables tack on an hour or so if you’re the completionist type, and by merit of atmosphere and story telling alone, Figment is an easy recommendation. Don’t let this adventure pass you by!
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Gameplay - 9/10
Graphics - 9/10
Sound - 9/10
Replay Value - 9/10
User Review( votes)
Embark on a surreal journey to conquer nightmares and restore peace of mind.
- Incredible sound track.
- Thoughtful and thought provoking level design.
- Unique art style.
- Thematically strong presentation.
- Boss fights fun and challenging.
- Dialogue and story well written.
- Full voice acting.
- Fair check points.
- Balanced puzzle difficulty throughout.
- Short run-time. I want more!
- Awkward selection when trying to interact with objects that are too close.
- Unnecessary amount of backtracking due to nature of some puzzles.