Pointless Nonsense

Posted in video games by Bill on June 23, 2017

I still have some games from the Humble Monthly thing I signed up for to get Stellaris that I haven’t played yet (and if anyone I know wants Steam codes for Ashes of the Singularity: EscalationBrigador: Up-Armored Edition, or Shoppe Keep, let me know), but the Steam Summer sale is underway, and Steam’s return policy incentivizes me trying games I buy through them quickly, since after 2 weeks it becomes trickier/not worth bothering. So The Turing Test is on sale for $8, and it’s a decently reviewed puzzle game with, based on the title alone, a theme I expected to like.

It’s basically the movie Ex Machina mashed up with Portal.  You’re a lady who wakes up with an AI giving her instructions. First person, you have a gun that helps you solve a puzzle. When you finish the puzzle, you go through a transition area that destroys any leftover bits from the previous puzzle and autosaves. When you enter the next puzzle, an AI talks to you. So… extremely Portal-ish. But you do talk. Plot-wise, the puzzles are supposed to be an actual Turing test. You’re in orbit around Europa and your ship lost contact with a station below. The people on the station built the puzzles to let a human in but keep an AI out (which ends up not making sense because you couldn’t make it through some of the later puzzles without the AI’s help, but whatever).

It has that thing where it lets you remap key bindings, but they don’t entirely work right. E defaults to “use” for a WASD setup, but I like to use ESDF because it’s totally superior. When you remap the keys though, the game interprets E as both “forward” and “use” (Fallout 4 had the exact same problem). Also the on-screen prompts tell you the default key to use, not the actual one. So I went back to default keys, and every time I alt tabbed out, I’d mash E to go forward and nothing would happen until I remembered I have to have my fingers on the wrong keys for this game. Also it sometimes captures the mouse even after you alt tab out, which is weird. Only major issue is the forced binary ending, since there’s an obvious in-between solution, but given the choices, only one made any sense.

But those complaints aside, it’s a good game. On par with The Talos Principle (which had better/more puzzles but a worse story).

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