Umiro review
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Umiro review

Our Review by Emily Sowden on April 10th, 2018
Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: A STRIKING PUZZLER
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Umiro is a gorgeous puzzler that, while offering up an interesting experience, ultimately falls a bit flat after a while.

Developer: Dicerolll Studios

Price: $2.99
Version: 1.1
App Reviewed on: iPad Pro

Graphics/Sound Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
User Interface Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
Gameplay Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar
Replay Value Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar

At first glance, Umiro is a seductively stunning top-down puzzler with style, an interesting primary mechanic, and substance.

After playing for a bit, however, some of the magic wears thin and you start to see the cracks hidden in the game’s foundation. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad game, it's just a flawed one, and that’s okay.

Draw your destiny

Umiro is a curious puzzler where you play as two friends, Satura and Huey, as they wake in a strange world with no idea how they got there. With their memories in bits, they have to collect crystals to try and remember what's happened, piece together the story, and figure out a way to get back to their own world.

To solve the puzzles, you have to draw a line from the characters to one of the corresponding coloured crystals. There are also bonus gems throughout the levels that you can collect for extra points, but getting to them won’t be easy.

Umiro review screenshot 1

After you draw the path of your first character and move on to your second, you watch a real-time preview of the path your first character will take and how fast they’ll take it. That sounds obscure, but once you start having to press buttons and avoid enemies, it gives you the chance to slow yourself down if needs be.

Both the visuals and the music are truly lovely. The game's Monument Valley-esque art style makes you feel all sorts of calm and the score, albeit simple and a little repetitive, helps it along in leaps.

It’s also brilliant that Dice Roll Studios decided to keep it calm, resisting the temptation to put timers or limits in. If mistakes in the game had consequences, it’d feel like a different thing altogether, and not in a good way.

Moving as one

Umiro has such promise then, and even through the first handful of levels it’s an extremely enjoyable and challenging puzzler.

After you’ve been playing for a while, however, things start to seem a bit too familiar. No extra mechanics or change of enemies come into play which means things get repetitive a little too soon.

Sometimes the actual ‘puzzle solving’ part of it is less logic, more trial and erro,r which is a shame. Ironically, the game’s lack of timers or move limits means you get lazy in your workings-out as well.

Umiro review screenshot 2

Puzzlers are a tricky beast to tame on the best of days and Umiro has a fair whack at it. It’s still entertaining and sometimes really challenging with everything going on on-screen, but it does fall short of being a really great game.

Though I’d recommend it to puzzle-lovers, it’s definitely best played in small bursts for the best experience, and while it may be tempting, try to challenge yourself to make it in as few moves as possible.

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