Fun Ways To Energize your Mind: Awesome Puzzle Games

In the current lockdown and work-from-home scenarios, we have seen an increased demand for awesome puzzle games cutting across gaming platforms. There is a need to exercise our mind and body to ensure mental and physical health. Just like the right exercises and equipment can do wonders for your physical well-being, the right games can definitely help you energize your mind.

Puzzle gamers know the benefits and emotional highs they get from working those grey cells, beating the odds and solving seemingly tough challenges. If you are a puzzle-lover like us, you probably already know the feelings you get when you’re working on a good puzzle. Solving one gives us satisfaction like no other. You then feel compelled to move on.. to the next puzzle!

Here’s our list of Top 12 Puzzle games (in no particular order) for PC/ Console Platforms. Some of these are also available for portable and mobile devices but we’ll have a separate post on that soon.

1. The Room

  • Format: Android, iOS, PC
  • Release year: 2012

Initially developed for the IOS and then Android this PC and now VR, this award-winning game from Firehouse Games can force you to use even those dormant brain cells.

The Room has physical puzzles, mysteries to solve and creepy rooms/ environments to get out of. Like most escape rooms this too involves a series of strange puzzles involving physical mechanisms like levers , switches, timed geared mechanisms with realistic physics and stunning 3D visuals.

As the game progresses, you get drawn into the enchanting world and the puzzles get increasingly challenging, with a high probability that gamers end up re-working your neural connections.

This will keep you twisting and turning and coming back for more, long after you finish each session! Good news for those who finish… there are multiple sequels like Room 2 and Room 3 and The Room: Old Sins to indulge in.

Check out the trailer:

2. The Swapper

  • Format: PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PS Vita, Wii U, Xbox One
  • Release year: 2013

This was developed and published by Facepalm Games, a Finnish for PC and Mac but later ported to even consoles.

The main protagonist is a female ‘starlord’ stranded on an abandoned research station. She finds a curious gadget that allows her to make clones of herself and switch between each of these characters.

The Swapper offers truly unique gameplay experiences and we’re sure that he game will make you rethink puzzles relative to space and consciousness.

Play it and you’ll get to know how befitting the title is – Swapper!

Check out the trailer:

3. The Talos Principle

  • Format: Android, iOS, PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
  • Release year: 2014

The gamer takes the role of an android with a strangely humane consciousness. The android is instructed to explore different worlds filled with obstacles. As the android progresses, it becomes evident that these worlds exist only in virtual reality.

The puzzles require the player to collect tetromino-shaped “sigils”. Keeping with its futuristic theme involves obstacles and resistance in the form of drones and turrets, all of which are computer-controlled. Sigils are used to assemble a tiling puzzle to unlock a door or some mechanism.

With over 120 puzzles, the game will keep you engaged in a whole variety of environments with curious, logical and strategic riddles and problem-solving scenarios to explore. 

Check out the trailer:

4. Fez

  • Format: iOS, PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PS Vita, Xbox 360
  • Release year: 2012

A multiplatform puzzle game, Fez is about a character called Gomez, who lives peacefully on a 2D plane until he receives a red fez and witnesses the breakup of a giant, golden hexahedron that tears the fabric of space time and reveals a third dimension.

The puzzles in this award-winning game involve floating platforms, discontinuous ladders, a literal 2D to 3D morphing, switches to activate, platforms that launch Gomez into the air. Gomez has to make sense of various codes and ciphers , treasure maps, loots, secret rooms and hidden treasures.

Check out the trailer:

5. The Witness

  • Format: Android, iOS, PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
  • Release year: 2016

This game involves the exploration of an open world island filled with natural and man-made structures and has over 500 puzzles to solve.

The game provides no direct instructions for how these puzzles are to be solved, requiring the player to identify the meaning of symbols in the puzzles. The art and symbols make the player use his neurons to figure out through trial and error and gain and solve the mysteries. The solutions of most puzzles may involve symmetry.

The Witness was released for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 4 in January 2016, with later versions released for the Xbox One, Nvidia Shield, macOS, and iOS.

Check out the trailer:

6. Portal 2

  • Format: PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
  • Release year: 2011

The sequel to The widely famous Portal, draws from the award-winning formula of innovative gameplay, story, and music. Like the first in the series in Portal 2 players solve puzzles by placing portals and teleporting between them.

Portal 2 adds features including tractor beams, lasers, light bridges, and paint-like gels that alter player movement or allow portals to be placed on any surface. The game features a fantastic split-screen co-op gaming campaign and in our opinion it’s one of the best co-op puzzle games we’ve played till date.

Check out the trailer:

7. Tetris Effect

  • Format: PS4
  • Release year: 2018

Tetris is a tile-matching video game. Tetris Effect is much, much more!

Everyone knows Tetris and practically grew up with this game. The game remains as the original, where players must complete lines by moving differently shaped pieces, which descend onto the playing field. The completed lines disappear and grant the player points. 

Tetris Effect is a futuristic take on the classic game, featuring over 30 stages with stunning environments and sound tracks that react to your gameplay and evolve as you progress. The level of immersion goes up multiple notches if you play the game in glorious VR using a PlaystationVR headset.

Check out the trailer:

8. LocoRoco Remastered

  • Format: PSP, PS4
  • Release year: 2017

This was one of the cutest Platform games on the PSP. Period.

The LocoRoco and their friends, the Mui Mui, help grow vegetation and look after nature, making the planet a pleasant place to be, playing and singing the days away. When the villainous Moja Troop comes to conquer their planet , the LocoRoco do not know how to fight against these invaders from outer space. Here’s where you step in as the saviour.

What makes Loco Roco so unique is the gameplay mechanics. You do not directly control the LocoRoco or any of the game characters. Instead, you controls the level of the surface itself, tilting it using the controller buttons.

You manipulate the orientation to cause the Loco Roco and other interactive objects to roll/move in the direction of tilt, as well as triggering certain actions by mechanical objects/ platforms. The game also features a few unlockable mini-games, the most adorable one of which involves creating a tiny house to put all the little blobs.

The game’s bright and colorful visuals and dynamic music soundtrack were hallmarks of the original PSP game, earning it several awards from the Gaming press in 2006.

The remastered version for the PS4 brings the handheld experience to TV screens with enhanced visuals while retaining all the zany fun of the original. The background score is so catchy you’ll be humming it in your sleep when you finally put your PSP/ controller down.

Check out the trailer:

9. Braid

  • Format: PlayStation 3, PC, Xbox 360
  • Release year: 2008

This is truly a gem among indie games and shows its brilliance at various stages. Braid is one of those rare platform games where you literally have to perform time-twisting mechanics to access pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.

It takes a lot of dedication to complete each level and the challenges will test the resolve of gamers, but the gameplay, sounds and story elements really draw gamers into the world. Braid is truly a treat for fans who love Mario-like games!

There are levels where time moves ahead as you walk from left to right. And then rewinds with every step in the other direction. The trailer video should help you understand this strange and unique concept. Time wells slow everything and each manipulation creates a duplicate who plays out your earlier steps.

Although this game may seem dated for today’s gamers, its an absolute treat for the true Puzzle gamers among us, so much so that Playstation announced a remastered edition for the PS4 coming out in 2021.

Check out the trailer for the original Braid game:

10. Limbo

  • Format: PS4, PS3, PS Vita, iOS, Android, Xbox 360, Xbox One
  • Release year: 2010

Limbo is a puzzle game that is full of clever ideas and puzzles, set in a and an eye for a minimalistic art. The story itself is extremely touching with your heart going out to the boy character seeking his apparently doomed sister.

The graphics will remind you of a dark nightmare where you struggle to put one foot ahead of the other. The eerie environments that the gamer has to traverse and the haunting music that lingers in the background adds to the angst of the player and urgency of the game.

The obstacle and deathly traps seem cruel but they symbolize the boy’s resolve and willingness to face and overcome seemingly unsurmountable odds to find his sibling. The pathos and frustration is tangible at every level.

The controls are simple – arrow keys to move and jump , and a single control key for interactions with the environment. But this puzzle game is anything but simple in its gameplay, featuring realistic physics and challenging your patience as well as understanding of motion and mechanics to get ahead …. and survive!

Check out the trailer:

11. Unravel

  • Format: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC
  • Release year: 2016

This beautiful Indie game was released in February 2016 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows. The player plays as Yarny, a small anthropomorphic creature made of yarn who unravels as he moves in the environment.

Yarny has to navigate through many environments like a beautiful countryside, beach-side, swamps, etc to collect yarn motifs, overcome obstacles and evade dangerous creatures along the way. Yarny can use his trail of yarn to explore and swing across many treacherous scenes.

Nothing much is known about the story or motive, but as the game progresses, the layer learns more about the Why… and it gets emotional! As Yarny moves from place to place, the story unravels in the game background, revealing pictures and hints that reveal his owners’ life filled with happy and sad moments.

It is a unique and compelling way of story-telling. The maker helps us interpret the story ourselves hinting that the yarn that makes up Yarny represents love, and that the character unravels as they travel away from what they love.

Check out the trailer:

12. Scribblenauts Unlimited

  • Format:Windows, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, iOS, Android, 3DS
  • Release year: 2012

In this game, the protagonist of the original Scribblenauts (Maxwell’s parents) give Maxwell and his sister Lily a magical notebook that can create any object by writing its respective word in it.

A prank on an angry old man brings a curse on his sister Lily causing her to slowly turn to stone. Their brother teaches Maxwell about collecting “Starites” which are gained by helping other people and which will ultimately help Lily get rid of her curse. The player as Maxwell must solve multiple puzzles before being awarded with a Starite.

Check out the trailer:

Which of these mind-boggling games will you choose to play next and on which platform? Do let us know!!!