'Minimalist' puzzle game Linelight is now available on Steam

Linelight is a minimalist puzzle game with a very simple premise: Guide a small point of light named Dash along a line. No jumping, no shooting—just movement. It is, as you might expect, deceptively simple.   

The visual style and relaxing music and sound effects remind me a bit of Flow, the meditative predator-prey sim from That Game Company. Each puzzle is small (although naturally, they grow in complexity as you progress) and purely logical, and new mechanics are introduced very leisurely and organically, to the point that I was sometimes picking up on them before I even realized that I was learning something. 

"Linelight simulates the experience of getting an A+ on an exceptionally hard test while receiving a back massage," developer Brett Taylor of one-man studio My Dog Zorro claimed on Steam. "The gameplay is simultaneously unique and intuitive enough that gamers, non-gamers, your technology-illiterate relatives, tweens, rocket scientists, a potato with googly eyes and toothpicks for arms, and even line connoisseurs are all on the same playing field of challenge." 

I can't vouch for the puzzle-solving skills of googly-eyed potatoes, but I've made through about 40 of Linelight's puzzles, and I'm really enjoying it so far. It's very clever at times, and more importantly it's the sort of game I can play for literally any length of time—as little as a minute or two—and still come away feeling like I've accomplished something.  Despite the simplicity of its design, Linelight is a hefty thing too, with an estimated six hours of gameplay in more than 250 puzzles spread across six game worlds. It's available now for $9 on Steam, ten percent off the regular $10 price, until February 7.   

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.