REVIEW / Meet me at Noon (PC)
Night and day we strive as gamers to be the best of the best and complete each level presented to us to its fullest. Meet me at Noon, the game that I’ve been indulging in recently takes that ethos and renders it into a puzzle game. I’ve been seeing whether the completionist in me can get his kicks or whether this rather heartwarming sentiment is really just that. This being said, let’s see how I got on.
At first glance, the premise here seems fairly simple. All you need to do is complete each level while collecting that stage’s star at the same time. Once you dive in and start getting to grips with things, however, you will quickly start to realize that a simple concept doesn’t always make for a simple game.
The first two levels introduce you to each of the characters you will control and interact with on your journey. Day is the first of the protagonists you’ll come across. Day rewinds his movements as you swap characters. Along with “Night” who goes back to the original position they started in and replay all their moves during the playback you’ll create while solving the level. All moves you perform with one character are recorded and are played back while you’re controlling the other, creating a small time loop. The timeline you’ve created with the two appears at the bottom of the screen and you can see how many moves you have in total to solve the level. If you make a mistake you have the ability to go back in time to where you fouled up and right yourself.
The mechanics in Meet me at Noon are pleasurable and simple. The tutorial will take you through how to move your characters, teaching you how to jump and also how to skip a turn. If you feel like you have messed up or that you could make a change to your path, there is no need to worry as the game talks you through how to rewind and replay your movements with your keyboard. The interface is beautiful and bright, with an elegant color pallet of blues and yellows that keep your eyes drawn to the screen. With smooth gameplay and seamless transitions between characters, it’s hard not to appreciate the work and thought that’s gone into this little puzzle treasure. This along with the artwork and design pretty much ticks all of the boxes. Even the main screen and level menu are dazzling to the eye.
As mentioned before, the first two levels in Meet me at Noon are your tutorials and character introductions, then the 3rd level throws you straight into it. Here you’re given the two characters you’ll become very familiar with on your journey and a nice relaxed start so you can get comfortable with them. I soon found out that the training wheels weren’t staying on for long. The further into the rabbit hole I went, I quickly noticed each level getting progressively harder with no hint or clue how to master it. I either found myself getting day and night into the correct position to complete the level and not collecting the star, or collecting the star and being out of moves to get them where I wanted them to be. The 5th level had me scratching my head for a good 20 minutes before I was able to figure it out. In hindsight the solution made perfect sense, these things are always easy though when you’re looking back on them.
In Meet me at Noon, developers Pandaroo Interactive have created a perfect balance for a puzzle game. They have made an enjoyable game that is tricky, keeps your mind working, and always has you questioning your next step. This is a refreshing change from games that are difficult just for the sake of being tough. Considering this is the developer’s first game release, I personally believe they have made an amazing start to their career in the industry.
For those of you wanting to give Meet me at Noon a try for yourselves, it was released on the 21st of June this year and already has some positive things being said about it. Feel free to have a quick google if you don’t want to just take my word for it. They have also already started rolling out updates with patch 1.1 adding new features to help new players and experienced ones alike enjoy the game more fully.
Meet me at Noon is a game that has me coming back for more every time I put it down. It’s a beautiful little time filler when you are struggling to find something to play, and once you start you won’t want to stop. I have been back and forth playing it in between other games and even when I have just wanted to chill out and relax (which never happens as I’m stuck on one particular level which is just rattling my brain.) If you decide to give this little puzzler a chance, be prepared to lose track of time, thinking you’ve only been playing for 5 minutes just to realize several hours have vanished. This is definitely one that will be staying in my library until it’s completed in full and hopefully with the future updates the developers seem to be rolling out, more content will appear to keep me stuck trying to figure out how to get my little characters to the stars.
This review is based on a retail copy of the game provided by the publisher.
Shooting for the stars.
Great to play at any time.
Meet me at Noon is an outstanding little puzzle game that will have you coming back for more day and night. If you like your gameplay simple and your puzzles deceptively tricky, this might just be the game for you.