Mixed or average reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Jul 15, 2018
    A story-based puzzle game which excels mainly in the latter. Puzzles quickly become challenging and that makes for a fun experience due in large part to great audiovisuals. The image sometimes stutters while turning the puzzle but apart from this minor issue this game is plenty of fun.
  2. 80
    There's a lot to admire with The Spectrum Retreat. It feels well executed and considered. There's a great sense of isolation and the puzzles are designed well to allow players to take their time and consider their movement. It's a competent, thoughtful effort that, in spite of what I think of the story's impact, manages to succeed with some clever puzzles.
  3. Jul 10, 2018
    Despite The Spectrum Retreat’s minor issues and its inability to merge its two halves together, it’s impossible not to recommend given the quality of each of those halves. A unique and innovative puzzle mechanic is introduced and taken seemingly to its limits, while a crushingly human tale of loss plays out alongside it.
  4. Jul 12, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat isn’t the most original game when it comes to puzzles, but its setting, narrative and story make up for it. If you want to use your brain while you discover a very interesting story, go for it.
  5. 70
    What makes The Spectrum Retreat special is how its puzzles are equal parts accessible and challenging. As a consequence, what started off as a laser-focused story line soon ebbs in favor of the puzzles themselves. The spectacle is in the vivid scale of its presentation, with narrative beats to keep things interesting.
  6. Jul 19, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat is definitely a promising debut for the Bafta award winner Dan Smith. The first person puzzle-adventure is not at all flawless but it deserves the attention of every fan of the genre.
  7. Jul 17, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat delivers a solid first person puzzle experience, but in terms of story and atmosphere the game fails to deliver.
  8. Jul 9, 2018
    As far as hybrid genres go, this is an interesting one. The combination of walking simulator and the integration of the puzzles is very well done, while the drip feed of the story is steady enough to keep your focus, driving you through the small niggles that arise throughout a play through. The whole thing is tied together with some great voice acting and great music. Overall, The Spectrum Retreat grabs hold and refuses to let go, while its clever combination of pure puzzling and story telling makes for an enjoyable and unique experience throughout.
  9. Jul 9, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat is a solid puzzler, with an immersive narrative undercurrent adding depth and emotion to a genre where such things are normally lacking. Look past certain repetitive sections and you'll find a title offering value for money and an enjoyable challenge.
  10. Jul 9, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat is a pleasant surprise. The colour coded puzzles are intelligently designed and present a decent challenge, while the Penrose hotel is an absorbing backdrop that creates an unsettling atmosphere. While it's a shame more isn't made of this setting, the game's storytelling, design, and puzzle solving is a compelling mix, and for less than a tenner, provides a unique experience across its six-hour runtime.
  11. Aug 8, 2018
    In short, the Spectrum Retreat is a bit out of focus, rough, sometimes disorganized.
  12. Games Master UK
    Aug 9, 2018
    A promising, though flawed, effort from a new developer. It's compelling core falters in its last act. [Issue#333, p.79]
  13. Playstation Official Magazine UK
    Jul 31, 2018
    What's here, while less fully formed in some areas than others, is still an impressive show from a developer working more or less alone. [Issue#152, p.79]
  14. Jul 13, 2018
    The Spectrum Retreat is full of good ideas and mysteries, but Dan Smith's first game is way too linear while playing the walking simulator card to please every amateur of the genre. Too many clues are given about the delicate subject being treated, but the core mechanics of dozen of color-based puzzles might be good enough for you to give it a go. With just a bit more coherence between the gameplay and the narrative, it could have been memorable.
  15. Jul 10, 2018
    Taken in small doses, the game can be a fun, challenging experience – as long as you step away before frustration sets in.
  16. 50
    If you’re a huge puzzle fan, like me, there’s something here for you. But in all honesty, there are plenty of puzzle games out there that wouldn’t come with this big of an asterisk. Go play those.
User Score

No user score yet- Awaiting 2 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 2
  2. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Jul 12, 2018
    I loved the puzzle part of The Spectrum Retreat. It was nice to figure things out myself without any instructions. The aesthetic design ofI loved the puzzle part of The Spectrum Retreat. It was nice to figure things out myself without any instructions. The aesthetic design of the puzzles was awesome and one of the coolest visuals of any puzzle game I ever played. The last puzzle was especially a treat and felt really satisfying to solve. Overall the puzzles were challenging but not frustrating, so it hit that sweet spot. They weren't as satisfying as Talos Principle or Portal 2, but they were satisfying and cool. The voice acting was great and the faceless mannequins were a cool touch. The music was excellent and gave me a relaxing vibe that complemented the puzzles so well. I liked that they tried to add a narrative and also break up the monotony of doing puzzles by adding the hotel aspect and some mystery, but it felt lacking. The concept was good but needed to be more fleshed out. By the end, I still didn't really know what happened and the ending felt lackluster. If it was more fleshed out, I would have given it a solid 8, cuz the puzzle part is well done. Overall, the price point was good value. Full Review »