Maize Review

by Nick Staunton-Mckenzie

Posted on Tue 7th Nov 2017

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I went into Maize not expecting much from it, but within about an hour I was equally entertained.

Let us venture into the literal cornfield, full of mystery and absurd oddities to discover what is behind all of the weird sightings on this abandoned farm surrounded by corn. Maize is a first-person adventure game, developed and published by Finish Line Games and is available now on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.  
So Maize is a game about two government scientists that misread a memo and create sentient corn. The story is a slow starter, with you simply waking up in a corn maze, while some weird shapes run away from you.

After this dull introduction, you quickly find that this isn't your average adventure game. The story plays out like one of the kookier episodes of The X-Files infused with the witty British humour of Monty Python or Red Dwarf. As you can imagine this makes for a hilariously weird journey around a poorly built farm, which is just a facade for a more absurdly constructed research facility.
For the most part, this game plays like your typical walking simulator, walking around from place to place performing actions in order to progress the story.

But that is not to say that this game isn't fun. The walking simulator style mixed with old school 1990's adventure game mechanics (ala The Curse of Monkey Island) make for a fun few hours filled with bizarre environment puzzles, and a whole heap of exploring to find all of the background storytelling found in the collectables.
The graphics have their peaks and valleys. The peaks are the unique design of all the characters, the level design, and environmental art style that the game reaches for. The valleys are the amount of graphical and texture glitches that the game goes through as you progress in the story, as well as the isolated frame rate drops which sporadically occur. Other than those minor problems this is actually a very good looking game.
The music in Maize is rather deceivingly used throughout. It sounds creepy and unsettling while you are roaming around the farm attempting to solve the puzzles. Until you get towards the end of the game, at that point things turn more upbeat and very 1980's.

The voice is delivered really well, in that it injects the right amount of humour, exposition, and intrigue. That is key to helping keep the player engaged in figuring out, just what is happening here?
To be honest, I went into Maize not expecting much from it, but within about an hour I was equally entertained and intrigued about how this story would unfold. The story was bonkers, the dialogue was witty and hilariously funny, and the visuals injected a fun and fresh life into the game. I came out the other side of this game having enjoyed the whole experience.

I recommend that everyone who reads this, pick up a copy of this game and enjoy a genuinely fun game while supporting a creative Indie developer.

Review copy supplied by Finish Line Games.



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