Semispheres (Switch, PS4, PSVita, PC)

Try to simultaneously maneuver an orange sphere and a blue sphere to their respective exits in the puzzle-like game Semispheres. Most levels are a symmetric pair of boards, color coded to the spheres. Get both spheres to their own colored exit to solve the level. The standard relaxing music and lack of any time pressure combine to make a soothing puzzler suitable for on the go gaming.

(Switch version reviewed here.)


As with every puzzler, the game starts simple, teaching you the basic ideas in the game. Each sphere moves independently. The left joystick controls the blue sphere and the right controls the orange. While navigating the maze, there are little “police” dots that have a “flashlight” they shine around and if a sphere is hit by a flashlight it pops back to the beginning. Thankfully, the “police” dots are usually stationary, making the game a logic puzzle rather than a “twitch” coordination puzzler. Running into a flashlight beam is usually your own fault. I primarily played the game solo, using the Switch as a portable game system, but there isn’t anything preventing play with two player simultaneously. Simply split off the two JoyCons a give one to a friend.

This leads to my first complement of the game. Most of the time there is no “fail” to a board, the appropriate sphere just pops back to its starting position. In fact, as levels progress you are sometimes forced to suicide on of your dots just to get the other dot through a tricky situation.

Every puzzle game needs character abilities to serve as building blocks to solving a level. At their most basic, the spheres can send out a localized “ping” that attracts the attention of one of the “police” dots, allowing the sphere to slip behind and move past. Spheres are later able to create “windows” to the other side of the board. Maneuver into the window and you appear on the opposite side. While there you are immune to the “police” on that side. You can then “ping” the “police” of the opposite color, giving your partner the chance to slip around. Spheres can also “warp” entirely from one side to the other.

Each ability is triggered by passing over a special icon on the board (indicating which ability it grants.) They are one-use at a time, but can be used again by going back to that icon. In fact, some levels require a sphere to gain powers, apply them to help their opponent, and then suicide themselves back to the beginning to get access to a starting power again.

The game builds up over time, using more and more powers within a single level providing a nice ramp up of difficulty. Most puzzles are fairly relaxing affairs as you scoot one or the other sphere along their way, perhaps quick a quick dodge here and there. However, there are the occasional bits of panic where you are required to “ping” one or the other sphere and then move both at the same time while the “police” move about.

After completing five levels you are shown a cute three-scene comic strip about a boy and his robot and their adventures. The story has almost nothing to do with the game as it progresses but it is a cute, sometimes semi-sweeet reward that gave me that “just a few more levels” feeling as I wanted to see what would happen next.


Semispheres is a great little puzzle game when you want a little downtime but don’t feel the need to play something requiring a speedy trigger finger. The game develops at a nice pace, slowly bringing in more and more abilities in order to ramp up the difficulty. While not part of the core game, I found the ambiance (music, comic strips, visuals) to be a big part of the relaxed feel of the game. For only $10 (on the Switch store), it is a worthy addition to the collection of any puzzle fan.


Kid Factor:
No reading required (even the comic strips), no inappropriate material here. The game is fine for anyone who can handle the two-joystick control scheme. The game could even be played with an adult so the younger player only has to worry about one sphere at a time.


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