HumanFeatured

Indie Corner: Human Resource Machine

The same team that gave us Little Inferno and World of Goo in the past, created human Resource Machine. Human Resource Machine puts you in the shoes of a drone, trying to climb the ladder in mega corporation. The task is easy, sort the mail from the inbox to the outbox. The way you do this is refreshing; you need to program your drone in order to get the job done.

Write scripts

The tasks sound easy and in any other game it wouldn’t take you long to bring the mail from the inbox to the outbox but Human Resource Machine needs some programming. You’ll be writing small scripts the entire time, using commands that resemble programming language. If you have a background in coding, the system won’t hold many surprises for you. If you’re new to coding however, you’ll need to pay attention during the first four levels of the game. The game features a total of 38 levels but without the basics, you won’t get far.

human-resource-machine1 (1)

As said before, the tasks always demand rather the same, delivering mail. Things get a little harder when you need to skip certain numbers or add certain numbers. You’ll need to go to the inbox, place the object on the ground, go back to the inbox, add the object to the one laying on the ground, deliver it to the outbox and repeat the progress. It’s the way a computer thinks so you’ll really need to adapt to this programming language if you want to advance in the game.

It’s not an easy game since not a lot of gamers will be used to solve puzzles this way, it’s what makes the game refreshing and frustrating at the same time. Since programming isn’t easy and often needs debugging to make the system work, we’re sure not everybody will be able to enjoy the game. Even if you don’t have a background in coding, you’ll need to have technical insight to get things done. If you’re not into technical processes, this game won’t bring you any pleasure.

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes 

Since it’s a rather challenging game, you’ll have room to improve your skills. The game doesn’t end when you apply a wrong script and therefore failed your objective. If you made a mistake, you’ll be able to debug your script and adjust your inputs. It’s great you never need to restart the entire process. Besides this you’ll also have three different tabs where you can write your script. This makes things a little easier since you’ll never need to rewrite entire scripts. See what went wrong in the first one and try replacing some commands in the second one. The game remains hard and the puzzles aren’t easy to solve but it’s great to see that mistakes don’t end in game-over screens.

human-resource-machine-review-multiplication

Even for the veteran programmers, the game is filled with challenges. Besides reaching your objective, the game also stimulates you to clear the level with a limited amount of commands. Your skills are measured on speed and amount of commands at the end of each level. This means you can go for perfect scores even if you completed all levels.

Great presentation

Gamers who’ve played Little Inferno and World of Goo know what to expect when it comes to visuals and sound. Human Resource Machine doesn’t disappoint. The characters are created in their typical ‘Tomorrow Corporation” style and all look great and unique. The design of the levels is simple but it works. Thanks to the simple design, you won’t be distracted during your job.

The same goes for the music. While solving the puzzles, you’ll hear a soft and relaxing music on the background. The music gives you something to listen to without distracting you from the objective. It’s funny how the creators managed to give the game such a serene soundtrack if you know you’re controlling a drone without hopes of a better future.

You can play the game on your GamePad only if you like. All buttons are mapped to the GamePad and you can always see what’s going on. No need to turn on the television if you’re playing alone. Turning on the television is useful if you have friends over, they can help you find the solution of the puzzle and correct your script  displayed on the television screen.

HumanVerdict
The good: The bad:
+ Unique concept – Very technical
+ Great visuals – Too short
+ Think like a developer

Human Resource Machine is a very unique and different game. It forces you to think like a developer instead of a gamer. This also means that solving puzzles is rather hard. The game isn’t difficult just to be difficult, it’s difficult since you rarely need to think like a developer in order to solve the puzzles. Once you got the hang of it however, you’ll finish the game rather fast. It’s a shame the game only comes with 38 puzzles since we would have loved to spend some more time in the corporation.

4 out of 5:

4sterren
 

Got interested in games since I could read. Started with Nintendo but evolved into an all-round gamer. I love all kind of games; triple A games to Indie. If the vibe is right, I'll enjoy playing it.