Crazy Machines isn't a particularly original game--there have been many other PC puzzlers in the past that have involved convoluted contraptions. But those who enjoy brain benders and creating Rube Goldberg-like machinery will certainly appreciate this game anyway. The game offers more than 200 different puzzles, as well as a sandbox mode to keep wannabe inventors busy for quite a while.
If you like tinkering with Rube Goldberg-like contraptions, Crazy Machines should be right up your alley.
The game's interface is clean and sleek. You'll see the work space prominently displayed in the center, containing fixed elements of the experiment already in place. The items you have to work with are listed in a sidebar to the right--you can conveniently click and drag them to where they need to go. There are also a few buttons in the bottom right corner, which are used for basic tasks like resetting the lab setup or starting and stopping the action. Many items need to be rotated or turned, which is done by hovering the mouse pointer over the item and selecting the option from the quick menu. If you ever forget the function of a certain piece, hovering over that item in the sidebar will bring up its description.
There are dozens of different pieces, all having unique properties. The game includes various types of power sources, balls, wires, balloons, gears, conveyor belts, boxes, catapults, pipes, widgets, and other knickknacks that you'd expect to find in a crazy inventor's lab. You'll even find unusual items like steam pistons, working blimps, cannons, dynamite, and robots, all of which help to make complicated work out of simple tasks. What's most impressive, though, is how the game seems to incorporate logical physics into its experimental setups. Allow a balloon to drift too close to an open flame, and it will pop. Heat up a boiler, and it will provide power to turn a steam piston. Different types of balls will have different properties that reflect their weight and elasticity--tennis balls, for example, bounce high but don't have the same force in a collision as billiard balls. The point is that the game allows you to use common sense as you try to solve the puzzles it throws at you.