AuroraBound Deluxe is the premier PC and Mac release from Irish game developer Final Game Studios. A port of the AuroraBound mobile game released earlier this year, Deluxe is a relaxing puzzle game of an unusual variety. A take-off on traditional jigsaw puzzles, AuroraBound has some fun with the genre and, true to its name, more than a little fun playing around with colors.
Unlike most pure puzzle games, AuroraBound does not focus heavily on logic, math or trying to make you tear your hair out in frustration. Instead, it focuses on providing a relaxing and calming experience for the player. While some of the puzzles are still difficult, the focus is more on the experience than the challenge, which is both a good and bad thing. It’s good if you’re looking to unwind and de-stress but if you’re looking for a game to fully focus your mental faculties on, this is probably not it.
The basic premise of AuroraBound Deluxe is similar to that of a jigsaw puzzle, only instead of the shapes of puzzle edges, you’re matching up colored patterns. Each color has a different pattern on it, making it accessible for any colorblind gamers wishing to partake. Some pieces are fixed in the outline and can only rotate, while other pieces are provided for you on the edge of the puzzle outline and can only move but not rotate. The aim of the game is to match up all the puzzle pieces so that touching squares each have the same patterns on their edges. Each puzzle piece is a square that’s separated into 2, 3 or 4 pieces with up to four different patterns on one square. The levels of the game are called Worlds and each world is a meta-puzzle with pieces that fill in as you play each puzzle. Click on the empty slot where there should be a puzzle piece to be taken to a new puzzle and fill in the square on the World slot upon completion.
The game contains 1000s of puzzles as after World 20 the puzzles are all automatically generated by the game, as opposed to the first 20 Worlds which are all hand-crafted. You can either keep playing further Worlds or simply use the game’s customizable puzzle tool which lets you set your own difficulty of puzzle, how many patterns, etc. It’s a fun tool, but there’s not as much of a difference in difficulty as the game would like you to believe there is, as it’s basically “So easy a monkey could do it,” “Medium puzzle takes a few more minutes,” and then “Looks insanely hard but if you keep flipping it around it starts to make sense.”
AuroraBound Deluxe is fairly straightforward, with a basic set up for a puzzle game. My only real complaint is that you have no way of going back and replaying Worlds or puzzles you’ve already completed, nor a way to see or save the images of the puzzles after you’ve completed them as the game quickly boots you back to the World screen. After speaking with the developer, I was told that a slideshow or flipbook of completed puzzles is a feature that may be updated in a future release.
Overall, AuroraBound is a fun game to play if you’re looking to kill time, but not something to sink your teeth into for hours on end like some other puzzle games. The bright colors and patterns are fun, and it’s nice to not be staring at numbers for hours, but overall it doesn’t contribute anything particularly innovative to the genre, just a bit of fun. So, if you are looking for a light puzzle game, AuroraBound Deluxe might just be it.
Our AuroraBound Deluxe review was conducted on PC via Steam with a review key provided by the developer.
A good port of a fun game, AuroraBound Deluxe is light on challenge but makes up for it with a fun and colorful design and an open-ended amount of puzzles, with the only major drawback being a lack of replaying or seeing previous puzzles.
- Fun, Relaxing Mechanics
- Bright Visual Style
- 1000s of Puzzles
- Can't Replay Previous Levels
- No Way to See Completed Puzzles