#229 The Incredible Machine

Posted: 2nd September 2019 by Jeroen in Games
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811th played so far

Genre: Puzzle
Platform: Various
Year of Release: 1992
Developer: Jeff Tunnell Productions
Publisher: Sierra On-Line

As one of the other games I had great memories of, I mostly experienced the Incredible Machine franchise through The Incredible Toon Machine, a more kid focused presentation of the whole thing. It has hints of Armadillo Run or a more focused Eets, creating Rube Goldberg style machines to solve puzzles.

This is the more serious version, but I think even then it has some cartoonish elements. I’m looking forward to see whether it’s still as playable as I remember it being.

Our Thoughts

While the Incredible Machine is one of the earlier Rube Goldberg games, it is a lot of fun to play – I kept playing the puzzle levels and needed to force myself to stop playing. There are a lot of different puzzles in there, with their own parts and different goals. In a way, it already feels like all the other games follow this. While the sequels put some additional flavour on it, later games that use this feel like they specialize for a specific type of goal or puzzle pieces or methods. In that, they lose some flexibility and they become less interesting – the potential here is what makes it good, especially with some of the creative elements and flexibility in your solutions. It’s a big space and it meshes well.

Graphically, obviously the game is quite simple, butthey work well. There are some situations where it’s a bit difficult to see whether they line up properly, but the game gives you enough chances to work all of this out. It makes it quite clear what’s going on, which is what matters.

Final Thoughts

The Incredible Machine perfects its formula well – big Goldberg devices with a bunch of different puzzles to solve and more than enough to play around with later. It still works and while the sequels aren’t on the list, they feel like they would work just as well.