Inbento review – Flavor of the month

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I review a lot of puzzle games. Some are good, many are bad. But none really sounded like inbento.

This independent puzzle will allow you to prepare simple Japanese-style dishes by organizing the ingredients in a square grid. At first glance, this probably doesn’t sound particularly appealing. In practice, this is absolutely brilliant.

Just like a real one bento, the presentation of inbento is top-draw. Everything you need – the orders, the recipe and, of course, the puzzle itself – is laid out right in front of you, as if you were preparing the food yourself. It’s a brilliantly designed user interface. One that was clearly designed for mobile, but translates seamlessly to the console.

Meanwhile, its artistic style, pastel colors, and mellow soundtrack make the inbento a beautifully simple and almost therapeutic experience.

And things wander into the dangerously adorable when cats – yes, cats – are tossed into the mix. Told through a series of images, the story of inbento revolves around the relationship between a cat and its kitten. Turns out you’re making them more and more complex bentos for him. It’s a touching and remarkably powerful story, certainly more than it has the right to be.

Like all good puzzle games, inbento takes a simple concept and masters it. You are given a small grid, some ingredients and an image of the final result, which you will have to reproduce. It starts out pretty simple – a piece of rice here, a lump of seaweed there – but it quickly turns into a culinary game. Tetris as more and more ingredients are introduced. The pieces start to overlap and you will have to consider not only the individual placement but also the order in which they fit into the bento box too.

Inbento review

Things get even more complex when new mechanics are added to the mix. Not only will you have to cut blocks to create new shapes, but you will soon have to deal with pieces that cannot rotate, pieces that can duplicate, and pieces that can swap places with others.

These mechanisms allow quite difficult puzzles, by themselves. Once you get to the end of the game and start tackling levels where multiple mechanics are in play at the same time, inbento wanders off into the utterly mind-blowing. Fortunately, puzzles can usually be solved in under six or seven moves, and the game has a cancel button – a solid feature in its own right that really encourages experimentation without the fear of having to restart.

You will find that the inbento not only offers a multitude of interesting mechanics, but presents them in a way that feels natural. Rather than just throwing a Mechanic at the player every few levels or so, inbento decides to introduce a new Mechanic pretty much every chapter. As the game progresses, mechanics from the previous chapters slowly begin to be added to the top, until the puzzles become a mess of brightly colored blocks and mechanics.

It’s a very stable difficulty curve. And not only does this allow the player to really learn and understand the individual mechanics, it also keeps players from getting overwhelmed by introducing too much, too quickly. Which, for a game that gets as difficult as this one, is remarkably important.

inbento xbox

The amount of puzzles available in the game is also a real bonus. At 127 out of fourteen chapters, players are getting a lot of content for a relatively low price.

Just like real Japanese cuisine, the inbento is an absolute treat. With its beautiful aesthetic, touching history, and deviously tricky puzzles, there’s something for everyone. The game is perfect in both bite-sized chunks and extended sessions, and the gameplay is designed to be challenging but not overwhelming.

If you’re in the mood for a new puzzle, choose this one. And if you’re not… take this one anyway. Quite simply, this is one of the best puzzle games out there.

Start snacking on ibento on Xbox Series X | S and Xbox One – find it on the Xbox Store

I review a lot of puzzle games. Some are good, many are bad. But none really resonated like the inbento. This independent puzzle will allow you to prepare simple Japanese-style dishes by organizing the ingredients in a square grid. At first glance, this probably doesn’t sound particularly appealing. In practice, this is absolutely brilliant. Just like a real bento, the presentation of inbento is top-draw. Everything you need – the orders, the recipe and, of course, the puzzle itself – is laid out right in front of you, as if you were preparing the food yourself. It’s a brilliantly designed user interface. The one who was …

Inbento review – Flavor of the month

Inbento review – Flavor of the month

2021-07-30

Jacob Stokes





Benefits:

  • Beautiful aesthetics
  • Great puzzles and lots of content
  • Soothing soundtrack
  • Cats!
  • Stable difficulty curve

The inconvenients:

Info:

  • Thank you very much for the free copy of the game go to – 7Levels
  • Formats – Xbox Series X | S, Xbox One, Switch, PC, iOS
  • Version reviewed – Xbox One
  • Release date – July 30, 2021
  • Introductory price from – £ 4.19


TXH Score

5/5

Benefits:

  • Beautiful aesthetics
  • Great puzzles and lots of content
  • Soothing soundtrack
  • Cats!
  • Stable difficulty curve

The inconvenients:

Info:

  • Thank you very much for the free copy of the game go to – 7Levels
  • Formats – Xbox Series X | S, Xbox One, Switch, PC, iOS
  • Version reviewed – Xbox One
  • Release date – July 30, 2021
  • Introductory price from – £ 4.19

User Rating:

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