The Minotaur Maze is an action, indie puzzle game that puts you as one of the four humans attempting to escape the maze of rampant Minotaurs. The game was developed and published by Ratalaika Games S.L. and released on steam on 21 Jan, 2016. As one of four humans trapped in the maze of Minotaurs, players are to survive at all costs – which means luring the Minotaurs into traps and crushing them.
The game offers a variety of modes, such as One Life, Endless, Arcade, Trial Mode, Time Attack and community maps. The sprite graphics of the game offers simple charm to the 2D maze explorer and the sound design of the game has a relaxing yet vibrant background sound that gives the game some lasting appeal.
While the game offers a variety of modes, they all rely on the game’s basic gameplay. Players are put into different maps where they solely rely on the same mechanic. To lure Minotaurs into choke points and crush them. The movement controls within the game are similar to the Bomberman games where players could easily navigate the map. However, unlike Bomberman, The Minotaur relies on the movement of the player and the player’s ability to maneuver Minotaurs to give the game a fun factor. It is because of the Minotaurs fast movement, that the puzzle and strategy aspect of the game is dispelled in favor of the fast action gameplay.
It is because of the gameplay and simple mechanics of the game that there is no difficulty in the game. The arcade mode for example, offers the best experience of the game, by allowing the player to engage through multiple levels that only ever increase the amount of Minotaurs within the space. Other modes felt tailored around this mode such as the Endless or One Life Mode, where the only differences to gameplay were the lives or time spent within the level. It is because of the simplistic gameplay that the longevity of the game does not last beyond hours.
The small indie developers do provide three different types of Minotaurs, some that can be killed between blocks while others have to be squashed into the wall. While the game gives players some variation of enemies, they all move at the same speed, pattern and across one tile at a time either diagonal or straight forwards. It is because of the indifference of enemies’ mechanics that the Minotaur themselves provide no variation to the tedious gameplay that players will undeniably find themselves in.
Furthermore, The Minotaur Maze does not offer any reward beyond the scoring system, which players will find themselves competing over. With the default scoring system, the game does offer some fun for competitive players who enjoy breaking scores similar to the arcade hits Pac-Man or Space Invaders. Another great social feature is the community created maps and co-op play. These added a new level of difficulty and fun in comparison to the single-player experience and default game modes. While gaming with friends adds hours to the game, the game itself offers little replayability because of the tedious gameplay.
In conclusion, The Minotaur Maze offers a fun experience by allowing the player to manipulate the environment to defeat the Minotaurs. The game gives charming sound design through upbeat techno music that mixes well with graphics of the game. However, those who are looking for puzzle and strategy will be disappointed by the games fast pace and tedious gameplay. The variety of game modes play identically to one another and offer little satisfaction beyond the numbers of the scoring system. The Minotaur is not recommended for players who are looking for a difficult or rewarding game experience.
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