Developer: Compulsion Games |
Publisher: Compulsion Games
Players: 1 Player Game |
Release Date: 11/15/13 |
Genre: Puzzle
One of the first games I booted up on my shiny, new PlayStation 4 was the Puzzle title Contrast. This was one of two free games Sony gave away as part of their “Instant Game Collection” for PlayStation Plus. Since every launch PS4 comes with a free month of the service, there is no reason to not give Contrast a try.

In Contrast, you control a young woman named Dawn who can only be seen by a young girl named Didi. You embark on a quest to help Didi put her family back together by repairing the tragic things that happen on the way of the journey. Dawn exists only as a shadow in reality but in Didi’s mind, you come to life and are able to move between the real world and shadows. As you play the game from the perspective of Dawn, all other characters, apart from Didi, play out as Shadows within the world. This makes for some interesting story sequences and are used to help solve puzzles.

While traversing the world as a shadow on a surface, you move from a three-dimensional world into a 2D plane. For example, you need to cross an area where there is no pathway and jumping on the ground would make you fall to your death. You transform into a shadow on the wall and walk across a rope’s shadow to reach the other side. This simplifies the puzzles but gives you an idea of what to expect within Contrast.

As you progress through puzzles, the story plays out. Didi’s parents are split up and having a hard time reconciling. Didi wants them back together and you, as Dawn, get to play a key role in helping mend the relationship.

Players gain new abilities as the game progresses. These include an ability to dash, knocking down walls, dashing through shadows in shadow form, picking up and manipulating items, and hanging and pulling yourself up ledges. As the difficulty of puzzles increases, players will have to utilize these skills to progress through the game and solve the puzzles.

As you wander through the fully 3D environments, players will find collectibles that give a bit of insight to the story. These also help unlock the bronze trophies that are available in the title. Overall, Contrast is a fun puzzle title that you can enjoy through a few sittings. However, it feels like it is a bit incomplete with several bugs, stick walls, and sticky items that leave you frustrated with the physics within the game world. As a free PlayStation Plus title, I had a blast with the game on the PS4 and highly recommend it to other PS4 users.

By Kaleb Rutherford – 11/18/13
ESRB Details: Rated for Fantasy Violence, Suggestive Themes, & Use of Tobacco.

Screenshots for Contrast Review