If you’ve ever wondered how the human body works, look no further than Arte’s Homo Machina for the Nintendo Switch. It’s an educational game from the studio that originally appeared several years ago on mobile. These types of games can be very hit or miss, but this one certainly leans toward the former and comes with a very budget price to boot.
The game is not difficult, as it mostly just takes the player through the workings of the human body. I like the idea of a bunch of tiny people operating the body as if it were some sort of factory. The interactivity keeps the player engaged and the educational value far exceeded my expectations. The game also has a bit of humor with the interactions between the mind and the rest of the body.
I was immediately disappointed that I had to rotate my Nintendo Switch in order to play the game in handheld mode. I do not enjoy the experience of holding my Switch vertically to enjoy a game. It makes sense visually to do this, but the bulky Switch screen makes playing a little awkward. Despite this, I eventually got used to it and went on to enjoy a fun gaming experience.
The game is filled with small puzzles to solve. Everything else is controlled via the touchscreen and I had no difficulty whatsoever operating the gears, switches, and personnel in the game. It can be satisfying to manipulate machinery within the human body. My favorite one was adjusting temperature and hosing off mucous in the nasal cavity – good, clean (gross) fun.
Graphically, the game features striking artwork. It offers aesthetically pleasing colors, excellent animations, and plenty of retro style characters. It reminded me of a corporate training video (but in a good way) or an older DOS-based puzzle game. The animations and environment manipulation made this game more interesting at the very least. The music is a bit sparse and quiet. It succeeds as background audio, but is otherwise unremarkable.
This title would probably work better as a smartphone title, and in fact it’s the same price on iOS as it is here on the Switch. You can’t beat a few bucks for the double value of entertainment and education—something Homo Machina definitely delivers.
Homo Machina Review
- Graphics - 7/107/10
- Sound - 5/105/10
- Gameplay - 5/105/10
- Lasting Appeal - 6/106/10
Final Thoughts: WORTH CONSIDERING
Aside from having to rotate the Switch to play it, Homo Machina is a fun way to spend a half an hour or so solving small puzzles and learning about the human body. It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but there’s definitely some entertainment to be had here for only three bucks.
Based in Colorado, David Buck is an author, musician, and media specialist. In his spare time, he composes music, writes science fiction, and builds scale models, mostly starships and movie cars.