Incredible Mandy is an adventure game that looks like a classic anime
With floating castles, robots and mechanical puzzles, it reminds me of the Miyazaki classic Castle in the Sky
Incredible Mandy's bright, colorful visuals and airy soundtrack are almost enough to convince you that it's a better game than it is.
From the cel-shaded visuals and dreamlike environment, I thought this new Chinese title (developed by Dotoyou Games) might be something like The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker or even Breath of the Wild.
In reality, Incredible Mandy is a much more simplistic 3D puzzle platformer. But that doesn't mean it's not fun.
The game puts you in an adventure on a floating kingdom, solving mechanical puzzles alongside a large robot, in a gorgeous environment that feels like the classic Hayao Miyazaki movie Castle in the Sky.
The story of Incredible Mandy is essentially about two siblings revisiting their memories. You play as the brother (the intentionally simplistic visuals make him faceless), trying to find your sister, Mandy.
I was happily surprised to see that the gameplay of Incredible Mandy is also quite enjoyable. The controls can feel a bit weighted at times, but they're mostly intuitive and never felt clunky.
The puzzles get progressively harder, but the game does a good job of warming you up to it. These puzzles revolve around switching on and off mechanical devices to help you get across obstacles.
Solving these puzzles require players to place light swords in different spots of the map. When connected, you can set off a chain reaction to help you take down obstacles.
But there are a few places where the hints were very vague, so much so that we were left feeling lost for about 20 minutes. (One puzzle in the game didn’t make sense at all to us.)
In addition, the game can at times feel a little bland because there isn’t much else to do besides puzzles. Combat seldom occurs, and when it does, it's a simple beat-em-up routine. While the map opens up nicely as you progress, the game doesn’t really incentivize you to further explore -- nor does it reward you for going off the beaten path.
If you want to learn more about Incredible Mandy, check out our entire stream here!