The Witness PlayStation 4

The Witness Image
Metascore
87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 82 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.0

Mixed or average reviews- based on 512 Ratings

Your Score
0 out of 10
Rate this:
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • Summary: You awaken, alone, on a strange island full of puzzles that challenge and surprise you. You can't remember who you are, and you don't remember how you came to be here, but there's one thing you can do: explore the island in hope of discovering clues, regaining your memory, and somehowYou awaken, alone, on a strange island full of puzzles that challenge and surprise you. You can't remember who you are, and you don't remember how you came to be here, but there's one thing you can do: explore the island in hope of discovering clues, regaining your memory, and somehow finding your way home. The Witness is a single-player game in an open world with dozens of locations to explore and over 500 puzzles to solve. This game respects you as an intelligent player and it treats your time as precious. There's no filler; each of those puzzles brings its own new idea into the mix. Expand

Trailer

Please enter your birth date to watch this video:
You are not allowed to view this material at this time.
Autoplay On Off
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 71 out of 82
  2. Negative: 2 out of 82
  1. Play UK
    Mar 25, 2016
    100
    An intensely satisfying and stupendously intelligent puzzle game that's incredibly well crafted, making it a very early, yet solid, Game of the Year contender. [Issue#267, p.62]
  2. Jan 25, 2016
    100
    The intricate puzzles and tantalizing secrets of this starkly gorgeous, mystical island are enough to lose yourself in for dozens of hours.
  3. Feb 1, 2016
    95
    I don’t think The Witness is a contender of the best game ever, but I do think it’s one of the best puzzle games out there. It does everything a puzzle game should do and does it well. I would like to see a bit more opportunities to interact with objects in the world, but I completely understand why that wasn’t part of the “deliberate” design architecture. Quite simply, The Witness has been one of the best experiences in gaming I’ve had in a long time, probably in about 7 years.
  4. 90
    It’s a brilliant, beautiful, masterfully crafted work, and the more you discover, the more apparent it is.
  5. Feb 4, 2016
    90
    The Witness is an expansive and wickedly smart follow-up to Braid, with puzzles to test even the brightest minds. Its mental gymnastics are well worth the occasional frustration, and you'll come out feeling like a genius.
  6. Feb 3, 2016
    83
    The Witness is one of the most elegant puzzlers around. It'll make you think, it'll make you laugh, and it'll make you yell. Above all else, though, it'll take you on one memorable journey that will stay with you for a long time.
  7. Jan 25, 2016
    40
    It's easy to fall in love with The Witness, and even easier to have your heart broken by the callous indifference of Jonathan Blow's beautiful island. A healthy challenge is good for any game, but the puzzles on display here offer few inroads to understanding for those who can't think exactly like their creator.

See all 83 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 60 out of 111
  2. Negative: 25 out of 111
  1. Feb 10, 2016
    10
    This is the best puzzle game ever made. It is also one of my top 5 games of any genre. It is absolutely *not* the same puzzle over and over,This is the best puzzle game ever made. It is also one of my top 5 games of any genre. It is absolutely *not* the same puzzle over and over, as others have said. I guess they just didn't play far enough? The environment and the "maze" puzzles are bound to and inseparable from one another. Neither could exist or would make sense without the other. This is increasingly true the further into the game you get. If you like puzzles you really must play this game. The Witness is a true classic. People will still be talking about and playing this game ten years down the road. How many games can claim that? Expand
  2. Jan 29, 2016
    10
    The amount of work went into this is astonishing. People need to realize that it's not a game that you are supposed to rush through, finish asThe amount of work went into this is astonishing. People need to realize that it's not a game that you are supposed to rush through, finish as fast as you can. You should play it from time to time, you can finish it in 6 months if you want to, playing it whenever you feel like giving your mind a challange, giving yourself something to think on. Stop crying because it's too hard, because you can't finish the game in 2 days. This game is not made to be rushed through in 2 days, or a week, you just take your time and enjoy the admiring work went into making these beatiful puzzles. I also think it would make a great game to play with your friends, everyone putting some input and solving puzzles together sounds like it would be fun. Expand
  3. Jan 26, 2016
    10
    The Witness is a puzzle game that essentially revolves around only one type of puzzle. Although there are variations to it, you’ll basicallyThe Witness is a puzzle game that essentially revolves around only one type of puzzle. Although there are variations to it, you’ll basically spend your time going around solving finger maze puzzles. However there is an environmental element to the puzzles where you’ll find solutions in the world around you. That in my opinion is a really clever implementation by Jonathan Blow (the genius who made Braid). But don’t let finger puzzles put you off... play this game, the world of The Witness is absolutely breathtaking and there is a good story behind all the puzzles even though it is quite subtle.
    In my honest opinion this game is better than The Talos Principle and is on par if not better than the original Myst Games. However my biggest concern is the price, 40 dollars is just too much for an indie game with only one mechanic. The game itself however is an absolute joy and possibly one of the games of the year.
    Expand
  4. Feb 21, 2016
    8
    Slightly down graded my score after finishing the game. The puzzles and the complexity were first rate. They and the stunning use of color inSlightly down graded my score after finishing the game. The puzzles and the complexity were first rate. They and the stunning use of color in the landscape deserve the highest praise. Indeed the entire game deserves the highest praise for providing a game that takes patience, thought and dedication to complete. It is rare that a game is willing to offer a challenge other than a test of motor skills. Most games reward pattern memorization over pattern recognition and I congratulate the creators on such a fine puzzle. That said I am left empty on completion. No overarching sense of purpose for the puzzles and a fairly flat cheerful ambiance deprived the game of a drama that has made other puzzle games more enjoyable with frankly inferior puzzles. This isn't a condemnation. If you enjoy puzzles and the reward of thinking through some fairly difficult ones this game offers a nice balance of needing to remain aware of the environment, think laterally but also requiring a player to dig in and actually work out the solutions. If you are more given to word puzzles and cryptography than to shape, color and pattern puzzles then this might not be the game for you. The same for the more casual puzzler. If you aren't willing to get out your colored pencils and graph paper you could have a very hard time with this game. Expand
  5. Feb 4, 2016
    6
    Some of what is done with the puzzles is extremely clever, though you do have to get past the first hour of the game which can be tedious andSome of what is done with the puzzles is extremely clever, though you do have to get past the first hour of the game which can be tedious and confusing. It's nice to play a game that expects you to work out how the rules of the puzzles work before you can then solve the harder puzzles.

    Unfortunately the problem is a lack of editorial - for every good puzzle type or element, there is another whole section which is tedious or frustrating. Frankly the creator needed someone there to tell him not to include every last idea he came up with. Sadly it's the puzzles that could simply have existed on a phone screen that hold the greatest intruigue with what little is done in the environment feeling like a shallow attempt to make the 3D world more relevant.

    This is another main downside for me - although the style and colour of the world are beautiful - the design is not. It's a static, sterile feeling world, reminding me of an American theme park version of a beautiful island deigned by someone who's never actually travelled. There is an artificial boat reck you can take a little ride though. There is an Asian zone, a forest zone and so on. In the end it feels more like some sort of awful theme park prison than anything enjoyable.

    As a last point - it's a real shame more was not done with audio, portal 2 did incredible things with ambient soundscapes and the silence does not help the atamosphere. Foley is, frankly, too realistic for the style (this is not Dogville), and the recordings you find are meaningless and frankly, incredibly pretentious (and this is coming from someone who liked Dogville!).

    I did enjoy it, but if you only play one 70 hour game this year, choose another. I would recommend waiting for a sale and then playing it but by bit. Hopefully the creators will focus more on their craft next time around, and less on their own image as intelligent, artistic 'auteurs'.
    Expand
  6. Feb 19, 2017
    5
    I like puzzles. I don't mind a game not being intuitive and helping you out by pointing you in the right direction. But this game simplyI like puzzles. I don't mind a game not being intuitive and helping you out by pointing you in the right direction. But this game simply doesn't cut it for me. It's too simple. Not simple as in easy puzzles (they aren't), but it doesn't offer as much variation as I'd expect. It feels a bit like a mobile game, laid out on a map where you walk from puzzle to puzzle, and they are all pretty much the same kinds of puzzles with some variation in how they are solved. They are always "look at this board and figure out where to draw the line" and "follow this cable to the next board".

    The puzzles become too monotone after a while and I have no desire to return to the game.
    Expand
  7. Jun 28, 2016
    0
    I had an issue installing The Witness which resulted in every file on my desktop being irretrievably deleted - yep, every pic, video,I had an issue installing The Witness which resulted in every file on my desktop being irretrievably deleted - yep, every pic, video, document. Absolute disaster. The distributor of the game, Steam, were utterly disinterested and even their parent company, Valve, made no effort whatever to try to help resolve the issue and basically told me to stop bothering them. You don't often come across customer service this bad these days.
    I'm a reasonably tech-savvy person and if it happened to me, it could happen to anyone.
    My advice - don't touch it with a bargepole.
    Expand

See all 111 User Reviews

Related Articles

  1. The 20 Best PlayStation 4 Games of 2016

    The 20 Best PlayStation 4 Games of 2016 Image
    Published: December 20, 2016
    We rank the highest-scoring PlayStation 4 games released during 2016.
  2. Best of January 2016: Top Albums, Games, Movies & TV

    Best of January 2016: Top Albums, Games, Movies & TV Image
    Published: January 30, 2016
    Browse our handy guide to the best entertainment of the past month, with lists of the highest-scoring video games, TV shows, albums, and films released during January.
  3. Most Anticipated Video Games of 2016, Part 2: New IP and Indie Releases

    Most Anticipated Video Games of 2016, Part 2: New IP and Indie Releases Image
    Published: January 21, 2016
    Preview 25 notable new videogame franchises debuting in 2016, including No Man's Sky, Star Citizen, The Division, Firewatch, Battleborn, Horizon: Zero Dawn, The Witness, Quantum Break, Overwatch, and more.