Samy Badache's puzzle adventure Poyas Odyssey that blends simple mechanics with clever ideas for a soothing yet mysterious experience. Plus, you get a Sonic Screwdriver! Sorry, that's what it is, made up my mind. Using [WASD] (or [ZQSD] for European keyboards) to move, the [spacebar] to jump, and the mouse to look around, you'll explore a strange temple filled with little round creatures called the Poyas. The Poyas will be able to help you pass obstacles and descend deeper, but you'll need to use a strange cube that they both fear and worship to manipulate them to do so. You can pick up and carry (or interact) with [E], right-click to throw things, and left-click to change the cube's colour... red will repel the Poyas, while green (... ish) will attract them and cause them to follow the cube, and you if you're carrying it, around. If you get stuck, hit [ESC] and restart the level.
It's a simple idea, and yet it's executed here with both ingenuity and style... and no small amount of charm, given the expressiveness of the Poyas themselves. The lack of dialogue and exposition doesn't necessarily hurt the experience, though it can occasionally mean interpreting the pantomime hieroglyphics that provide your instruction is potentially difficult. It's a short game, and chances are you'll wish it was even longer, since while it lasts, Poyas Odyssey manages to deliver the sort of relaxing, intriguing experience few puzzle games really manage. It feels a bit more conceptual than finished product, although that might be wishful thinking since a bigger adventure taking place across multiple locations seems like something this sort of concept was made for. Don't let its brevity turn you away, though... if you're looking for a simple yet clever idea, thoughtful puzzling, and a calming mood, Poyas Odyssey is the perfect choice, and the type of thing I hope we see more of in the future.