App Reviewed on: iPad Air 2
User Interface Rating:
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Agent A: A puzzle in disguise is an adventure game that puts you in control of a secret agent as you infiltrate a hideout and capture the villainous Ruby La Rouge. Overall, it's a pretty straightforward game, but its “escape the room”-style puzzle design is pretty brilliant and makes you feel like a super spy yourself.
Seek and solve
After a short exposition that explains your mission, Agent A dumps you right outside the front door of Ruby La Rouge's hideout. If Agent A were any other game, you might be able to just walk through the door and start exploring, but that's not how this game works.
Instead, you have to hunt around your environment to find items and clues to unlock paths toward your next objective. This can be as simple as finding a key, but often involves more circuitous sets of puzzles, particularly as you get further into the game.
Unlike some other adventure games, Agent A doesn't really feature any character interaction. Aside from a few cutscenes where Ruby brags about how you'll never catch her or escape alive, you're left completely by yourself to figure things out in the space you're in.
As much as this makes for a pretty lonely experience, the amount of detail that went into Agent A's puzzles and environment designs really stand out when there aren't any other characters standing in the way. Also, without other people to interact with, Agent A gets really creative with what kinds of puzzles it presents you with, making it feel pretty fresh throughout.
Your next mission
When Agent A initially released, it came with only two chapters that didn't quite tell a complete story. Since then, a third chapter has released. Although it also doesn't quite finish off the hunt for La Rouge, it adds a decent chunk of content to the game along with a lot of new puzzles.
Out of all three chapters, I didn't like the environments of chapter three quite as much as the first two, but the puzzle design in the most recent chapter is easily the most ambitious. I'd say the additional chapter is worth picking up if you liked what you played of the first two.
The bottom line
Agent A is such a different thing from most other adventure games that I've played, and that's mostly a good thing. It doesn't have the most challenging puzzles out there. In fact, I found myself occasionally bypassing steps of puzzles because I figured things out before I was supposed to. That said, it's still inventive and does a great job of making you feel like a really smart super spy as you play it.