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Open Me Review

Hollywood has taught me to be wary of strange boxes, from the flesh melting Ark of the Covenant, Pinheads puzzle box of pain or the mystery that lies within Pandora’s Box. So with trepidation I open my fist box on Open Me, however I was not met with hooked chains and pain hungry Cenobites but a fried egg.

How do I get my hands on such bountiful booty I hear you cry, well the new digital game from Japan Studio is where to look, offering a trail version for free with some standard boxes and a multiplayer mode or for some extra cash, (£0.65 per pack) you can pick up some box packs that will truly test your 3D puzzle skills.

Though the thought of winning various digital prizes is not exactly thrilling, actually getting to them is. Each box you encounter has a variety of devices to stop you from getting the goodies inside. Things start off simple with basic switches and slide mechanisms or just flipping lids, but then you start getting real challenges with multi touch points and even spinning blades, ready to chop away at your fingers and in turn, losing a life, ten fails meaning you have to start over again. The box designs vary widely from one another, some punish you, some are puzzling; you even get a gun toting robot that you need to work out how to transform back into a box by moving its articulated limbs.

Though limited to what each box can offer and some limited replay value with getting better ranks and solving the boxes quicker with as little taps as possible, the game also unexpectedly offers an online option, granting you the chance to create your own boxes and then challenge your friends to solve them.

Here you can photograph whatever you like as a prize for a friend and then set up crazy switches and devices you have unlocked onto three faces of the box. You start off with a relatively small selection, but by confounding your friends you gradually earn more experience, which in turn unlocks even more switches and traps for you to use. Creating these boxes could not be any easier, with three box grids representing the three faces of the box, you just then tap and slide whatever you like onto the faces, take it out for a 3D test to make sure it all works and then just send to a list of friends, where you then wait for the XP to start rolling in.

Open Me is one of those rare puzzle games that are impractical to create in the real world, so a AR digital experience makes these practical and very fun to use, moving around the box with your Vita camera to try and work out the best possible solution. Sadly this technology is still without its trappings, with the first quest searching for your AR cards, though if they are lost good and proper you can play the game without them, using a well-lit area with a contrasting item from the floor to project onto. My only real gripe however is that most of the boxes will require an unrestricted view, with you walking around, zooming and tilting the camera to jostle for the best position with your Vita; okay if you have the space and lighting, otherwise this game can be a bit of a non-event. I found myself wanting to play this game on the train which turned out impossible and it is a shame as adding a camera control to the d-pad would have made this a more widely applicable game; sadly even the old trick of moving the AR cards instead of the camera does not work.

Open Me is a great pocket money puzzle game with some great possibilities due to the open nature of the online challenges. As long as you have the space to use it this is one of the best AR games on the market to date.

Words by Ash Buchanan.
(Version Tested: PS Vita)


+ Create your own boxes and challenge your friends.
+ Reasonably priced puzzle packs.
+ A 3D puzzle box in your house.


- You do need good lighting a little space to use.

Edited On 19 Aug, 2013

( 2 )
troublemaker's avatar
troublemaker 3 years ago
I did kind of fancy this. I might pick up the demo and have a play at some point.
PrometheusFan's avatar
PrometheusFan 3 years ago
I've heard a lot of good things about this one, but I'm not going to bother as I can't stand all that AR bollocks. Way too inconvenient to use on a handheld imo.

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