Hexologic by MythicOwl
The words “math” and “game” have always felt contradictory to me, but I guess I can blame my education for that as, in my own way, in my own life, I have discovered a certain satisfaction in numbers coming together to create “the answer.” I’ve become pretty adept – thanks to the game of darts and a certain inheritance from my old man – at mental addition and multiplication. So in spite of myself, a liking for simplistic arithmetic has burrowed its way into my psyche.
Having said that, I don’t necessarily enjoy mathematical puzzles. But, as someone who likes a clean, pared-back style in a sea of interesting concepts generally blown up too big for their own good due to insecurity disguised as self-assuredness, enter Hexologic. A game. With math.
A foundational tenet of Polish game developers MythicOwl‘s philosophy is to “combine the development of skills with entertainment.” Having achieved this previously in various guises on mobile and soon in VR, including Note Fighter, a mobile game that teaches sheet music, they have now released Hexologic, a math puzzle game.
Playing by Numbers
The idea is easy to grasp: From the outset of each of the 60 stages, there is a non-specific honeycomb shape comprised of various hexagons. The hexagons that contain numbers must be joined together by filling in the empty hexagons with either one, two or three dots. The test comes, for example, when dots that work to solve a vertical problem, negatively affect a diagonal or horizontal one, so the vertical must be reconsidered to accommodate all three. Therefore, I could call Hexologic’s puzzles something similar to a misshapen numeric crossword puzzle or a kind of mutated Sudoku. In my opinion, this game is more enjoyable than that boxy brainteaser.
The game has a consistently clear and straightforward goal, and hitting the goal is certainly satisfying for anyone with a penchant for number head-scratchers. Everything from the colors to the music – each click elicits a different kind of musical note – are crisp and cleanly presented and offer a meditative quality, as the problems themselves, though they do become more expansive and taxing, are never especially challenging.
Difficulty is not the point; it is purely to make you think. There is solely addition here – no multiplication, fractions, division or silly algebra.
Dig it: Dots to Digits
I completed Hexologic, including its trickier 15 or so bonus stages, in a little over two hours. It was a pleasant, pretty and easygoing experience that I would recommend to anyone who likes arithmetic-based conundrums but isn’t interested in working too hard. I found it engaging and fun throughout.
Hexologic is available via Apple’s App Store, the Google Play Store Steam.
Watch the official Hexologic trailer below: