The Magic Circle MastheadThe Magic Circle Masthead

The Magic Circle

Rating Summary

Based on 20 critic reviews
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Based on 20 critic reviews
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General Information

Available on:PCJul 9, 2015

Developer: Questionary, Question

Publisher: Questionary

Genres: Puzzle, Adventure

You are the protagonist of an unfinished 1st person fantasy game, trapped in development hell. The designers (played by James Urbaniak, Ashly Burch, and Karen Dyer) are god-like, but so indecisive that they've given you no powers whatsoever. With the help of a mysterious disembodied voice (Stephen Russell) you must seize the tools of game development from these unworthy 'gods', uncovering more of the darkly comic story as you go. Rather than traditional puzzles with a single solution, the incomplete state of each environment is a question that you answer in your own way. Trap the designers' creations, steal their behaviors, and re-mix them to explore and master this world-in-progress. Can you out-think the game gods? Can you ship The Magic Circle from inside it?

The Magic Circle Critic Reviews

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No Recommendation / Blank

This is a game written for people who have worked in a particular kind of game development. It's hard to applaud the jokes when it's unclear where the lines between reality and exaggeration lie - and this is a story whose shoots grow from lived experience. Far easier to applaud the game's core gameplay invention, which enlivens The Magic Circle at its heart, and a piece of design that, unlike Ishmael Gilder, will surely find a life beyond its game.

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Visually drab and a bit too taken with its own story, but otherwise a clever and fun exercise in creative problem-solving.

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7.8 / 10.0

The Magic Circle is a marvelously creative, puzzling adventure that's very mad at you.

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The Magic Circle could have easily went with the normal limited interactions of the standard environmental puzzle game, but Question Games took things one step further, adding rich mechanics that allow players to tinker with its inner workings on some seriously impressive levels. This kind of open-ended ambition may leave players feeling lost at times, but its exploration of the act of creation and collaboration will stick with them for years to come.

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