The Room is back! After Fireproof Game's wildly successful 2012 mobile point-and-click puzzle game, the team got to work on a sequel. The Room Two is now ready to impress, taking just about everything that made the original so perfect and making it even better. Dozens of layered puzzles to solve, multiple boxes in each room, a spyglass to give you a new perspective on locations, and the same dark, haunting atmosphere that make the games so irresistible.
Each chapter in The Room Two features sets of boxes you must figure out how to unlock. It's more than just "find key, insert into keyhole, celebrate", as each of these containers is riddled with tiered puzzles to solve, often requiring pieces to be brought in from elsewhere. Even the word "box" is a bit of a misnomer, as you'll be pulling apart everything from model ships to treasure chests to entire table tops. Oh, and plenty of actual boxes, too.
Navigation is an elegant affair with The Room Two. To shift from one box to another, simply pinch to zoom out, just like you're browsing a web page on that fancy mobile device of yours. Tap and drag to look around each area. Double tap to zoom in on an item of interest, then slide your finger to take a look at the object from different angles. You can also interact with many objects, such as pulling out drawers, flipping levers, taking off lids, rotating inventory items, etc.
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A handy spyglass quite literally adds a new layer to every puzzle. Certain clues can only be seen by swapping the lens, sort of like those old decoder puzzles you'd get in your cereal (if you ate the fun cereal as a kid). This not only forces you to look beyond the puzzle you're trying to solve, it also contributes to the tightly-knit spaces that give The Room Two such a brilliantly claustrophobic feeling. The walls aren't closing in on you, you just feel like it's those boxes and you, nothing else exists.
Analysis: The Room Two is such a brilliantly crafted work of art, it's difficult to even draw comparisons to other games in the genre. The production values are extraordinarily high, featuring detailed models with lighting effects that make objects look eerily realistic. The atmosphere is unparalleled. Spotlights illuminate only the boxes you're working on, leaving everything else sitting just beyond the shadow line, teasing your mind with what secrets are behind the veil. Finish the chapter and you just might find out.
The touch interface works really well for The Room Two, although it does feel slightly sluggish from time to time. There's an integrated hint system that appears after several moments of inactivity, pointing you in the right direction without spoiling things right away. It's the perfect brand of nudging games like this need, allowing you to do things on your own but whispering secrets in your ear so you don't get frustrated.
If you've played through The Room, you'll immediately notice that The Room Two is a bit more straightforward than its predecessor, despite featuring multi-boxed chapters. Puzzles seem to fall into place with less effort and thought, and since your attention is divided between multiple areas, some of that razor focus is lost. Still, it's not a disappointing sequel by any means.
Quiet, mysterious, layered with intrigue, and delightfully cerebral. The Room Two knocks everything up a notch for the room escape genre.Unlocking boxes has never been this complex or provocative. And we never want it to end!
NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the iPad 3. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.