The Witness is a research logical philosophical adventure from the perspective of the first person. The indisputable refreshment in the sea of video games, because it does not keep you by the hand, cheerfully blinking the terrain elements and pointing your finger into a marker that indicates where you should go.
From the very beginning, The Witness is a real refreshment, the gameplay will take you deeper into the forest more accurately, on a lean island. There are no tutorials, no explanations, you are simply left to work out how you know. You start by sitting in a long tunnel leading to the surface, into a small, ruined garden.
The first thing you see is the large energy gate that prevents further passage, the bundles of the outgoing power lines that diverge from them. Solving the problem is the main and repetitive element of the gameplay around which most of the story itself revolves. The lattice maze point connects the starting and end points with the energy trace the player prints on the screen.
Once you find the right solution (or more), the panel will remain lit and activate whatever it is connected to. In the beginning, this works simply, but the problems are complicated as you progress through the game. The puzzles of one type are becoming more and more complex, then they become more diversified, that is, you get access to a number of challenging types.
Later, it comes to combining different types of tasks, with many accompanying, aggravating factors such as, for example, broken, hidden or sheltered parts of the labyrinth. When you pass through the energy gate, the island is spreading in front of you in all its beauty and gluttony, without any living creature you meet by the way, giving you the freedom to move absolutely in any direction without any limitations.
The island is made up of several logical visual entities: forests, swamps, snow peaks, a desert temple, a ruined city square, and etc. These entities are seamlessly integrated into each other. Problems and tasks on panels, as we say, come in many types or combinations.
In one case it is only necessary to separate the colorful elements, in the second one, symmetrically plot two paths that must not be crossed, in the third solution it rests on the construction of recognizable Tetris shapes. The boat is your best friend at the beginning of the gameplay, and you are the first to build a series of linked panels, as you gradually learn the logic of solving a particular type of problem.
The most important of all is that you are always aware of your environment, because the solution of a large number of panels directly depends on external factors. The screens and maze on them are actually just a superficial layer of the game and a strong skeleton with a lot of mysterious and phantasmagoric content.
Sooner or later you will begin to witness strange things in the Witness world, which require much more attention and observation from a mere run-in from one terminal to another. What are the black, silent monoliths scattered around the island? What are human and animal statues on all sides?
The Witness is full of such moments, and this is what makes him a vanity game in the broader sense, because he is not subject to conventional conventions characteristic of other titles. There is no clear goal you are aiming for, there are no clear side tasks, there is no jump for bonuses and 100% completion.
The author of the game claims that there is a puzzle in the game that will be able to solve only 1% of the players. The worst and best of all is that you probably will not even be aware that you have solved it even if you succeed in doing so.