Everything Has Its Place In The Shape Of Things

Another decent puzzler from Hyper Three Studio with an emphasis on the chill vibes, The Shape of Things is out now on PC.

This The Shape of Things review was going to include an Ed Sheeran reference, but upon double-checking Spotify, I would have made a cock-up on the title. And while we’re making comparisons, this puzzler isn’t an ode to anyone but you and your precious chill time.

From Hyper Three Studio, who brought us Tiny Lands (which I hasten to add in an absolute steal on Steam – get it if you like chill vibes), this puzzle game continues that zen approach of working out how things should go to the beat of some very relaxing tunes.

Having played it, the Rubik’s Cube reference is very appropriate as you essentially rotate numerous themed 3D objects so that they line up perfectly, allowing you to move on to the next stage. While this game is supposed to be relaxing, I almost guarantee you’ll binge it and attempt to do as much as you can in a short time.

The Shape of Things Review - Scroll to the end
Scroll to the end. Source: Steam

The Shape Of Things Review – PC

There’s no story here; it’s a puzzle game, so you get started after the brief tutorial. Again, the emphasis on The Shape of Things is relaxing, but based on the pace, it’s unlikely that you’ll be stumped too long as the concept is accessible enough.

Each object is broken down into smaller fragments – some more complex than the others. Using the Steam Deck as a reference for controls, the left stick will swing the camera around the item (without manipulating it directly), the right stick will rotate, resize or shift a part, and the shoulder buttons will select each piece.

The first challenge is to work out what the object is so you have a headstart, but generally speaking, you will attempt to move each piece as one of them usually is the key part you want to start with, then connect everything else around it. For example, some items can only move up or down, left or right, so position those first, then rotate everything else until it clicks.

The Shape of Things Review - Feeling nautical

Spin, Spin Sugar

Much like all those walking simulators you’ve played, The Shape of Things is a series of 3D items you spin on their axis, albeit with purpose. Once you solve a puzzle, you obtain a token in a gacha-gacha device that unlocks a new playing area. As stated, each one is a theme, and the objects supplied relate to that – i.e. nautical, nature, or snacks.

Visually, it’s lovely, as is the calming music. There weren’t really moments of frustration here, with a few exceptions where an item didn’t line up and an outline of the selected part might conflict with everything else. Fortunately, the analogue sticks allow you to move the pieces incrementally, so it’s just a matter of time.

There are a few other extras in The Shape of Things, such as customising the time and day, weather effects, and replay levels to unlock new achievements, i.e., solving a puzzle within 10 seconds. These add to the replay value, but in my experience, this isn’t a game you might immediately pick up after completion, though a title you’ll want to keep in your library when you fancy a break.

Verdict

I played The Shape of Things entirely on the Steam Deck, which was perfect. This let me play on the sofa while the family watched rubbish anime or just before bedtime to chill. It’s a very good puzzle without being too strenuous, and thus well worth the price.