Aria wakens in a space station – the Entropy Centre. Right away, she’s got two major issues to deal with:
- the planet earth is being destroyed
- the Entropy Centre is abandoned, and on the brink of collapse
Fortunately, Aria has the right tool to deal with this kind of situation – a talking gun by the name of ASTRA. Not only does this gun have a personality and can keep Aria some company in the abandoned facility, but she can reverse time. For example, she can repair damaged bridges, restoring them back to their original condition. Pathways that are destroyed can also be reversed and walked on. Will Aria be able to save the earth from total destruction? Will she be able to survive the Entropy Centre with its puzzle chambers and find the truth behind the facility? You’ll have to find out…
Reversing time or objects is key in this game. Cubes will have to be moved around and placed on switches. But a lot of the time, the movement of these cubes will have to be reversed in time in order to progress in the game. Thus, The Entropy Centre takes a lot of hints from the Portal series, from the puzzle elements, to the atmosphere, to the talking gun that teases Aria along the way. One could in effect say that The Entropy Centre is the spiritual successor to Portal. But in a lot of ways, the game has its own spin on how puzzles get solved. And unlike Chell in Portal, Aria has a voice, and talks back and forth to ASTRA.
I haven’t finished the game, but I’m definitely liking it so far. The puzzles aren’t easy sometimes, but they’re not too difficult either. New elements come into play the further you progress. For instance, some cubes will be able to emit a ray of light that Aria can walk on to cross the other side of a level. Electric fences, when crossed, will remove the time stamp from ASTRA, and she won’t be able to reverse time on any object. Crossing this fence with a cube will also destroy it. Usually, activating a switch will remove the barrier, but this switch will need to be held down with a cube…and then that cube might need to go somewhere else, without Aria getting in physical contact with it. That cube will have to be reversed in time. It’s a puzzle in of itself trying to explain this on paper; you’ll really need to just see the game in motion to get an idea of what I’m talking about.
As Aria progresses in the Centre, computers will usually accompany each new room. Aria can use these to examine emails that were exchanged between employees who once worked in the facility. It’s definitely some interesting lore to catch up on and learn more about the history of the Entropy Centre.
How Does it Steam Deck?⌗
Very well, actually, at least with GE-Proton7-41. 16:10 is supported. Mostly a smooth 60 FPS well throughout the time I played it on the highest graphics settings. 20-25 W consumed on average. I can clock it down to 40 Hz with a TDP limit of 8 or 9, depending on the level. You could even get away with 7 W in some cases, so long as you have the resolution set to 1024 x 768 in borderless. Setting the refresh rate to 40 Hz will make the game only consume 11-12 W, and it still looks pretty good in my opinion.
If you’d like a more detailed report, have a look at Steam Deck HQ’s review.
If You Like Puzzles, You’ll Like This⌗
I really enjoyed my time playing The Entropy Centre. The lore is interesting, the puzzle mechanics are certainly executed well, and the back and forth dialog between Aria and ASTRA can be pretty entertaining to listen to at times. According to How Long to Beat, the game takes about nine hours to finish. The game is definitely something to look out for if you’re a fan of the Portal series.
- interesting story/lore
- well-executed puzzle mechanics that are neither too difficult nor easy
- works great on Deck
No cons for this game! At least not yet…
Get the game on Steam for $25.
Review key provided by Terminals.