TOK Game Review

TOK is a simple puzzle game about rotating pieces to connect the start and end of threads. Filled with soft colors and relaxing music, it’s a pleasant experience for all audiences. 90 levels are available in the first game, with more in the series for interested players.

Format: PC via Steam
First playthrough time: 1 hour

Fragmented white lines on a purple, pink, and blue gradient background
Released November 15th, 2018 by Crew Lab

Quick Overview

Major Pros:

  • Relaxing puzzles
Major Cons:

  • Repetitive clicking
Minor Pros:

  • Wonderful music
  • Soft graphics
Minor Cons:

  • Only an hour long
Level select screen with 90 levels available.
‘DLC’ levels are included with the base game

In-depth Review

The puzzles in TOK focus on the simple rotation of pieces until everything lines up into a continuous thread. In some of the later levels, multiple thread start points are available or a start point may start multiple threads. The puzzles are very easy but satisfying to complete.

Single curved white line going diagonally across the screen. The top half is still fragmented and needs to be rotated into place.
The first couple levels introduce the mechanics as simple as possible

All the levels in TOK have relaxing piano music that plays in the background. The game features pastel colors and a soft glow to interactive pieces. The feel of the game invites relaxation and taking things at the player’s own pace.

Completed white lines on a green gradient background. There are 4 lines of different lengths and curves.
Later levels can have multiple threads

The controls of TOK are very simple, using only mouse movement and the left mouse button to navigate and rotate pieces. I did, however, wish the right mouse button had been useable to rotate pieces the other direction, or that clicks on a piece queued up so the player didn’t have to wait for the rotation animation to click again when the piece needed to be rotated 270 degrees. Without this, there was a lot of clicking and waiting half a second.

Partially completed TOK level with 2 unfinished threads on a green gradient background.
A partially completed level

Unfortunately, TOK is only about an hour long including the ‘DLC’ levels (included in the base game). I’d have loved to have more levels to pass the time and help unwind. It’s clearly intended to be a short experience, and already two more games are included in the series (TOK 2 and TOK HARDCORE) which increase the difficulty of the puzzles.

A winding white thread on a pastel purple, pink, and blue gradient background. The thread splits 3 times leaving 1 start and 4 endpoints.
A completed level!

Recommendation

Overall, I enjoyed the relaxing nature of TOK. The puzzles are simple, and the music and visuals are quite pleasant. While the rotations could become a little repetitive, this didn’t impede the gameplay. I’m excited to see there are more games in the series. I recommend TOK to all fans of relaxing puzzle games.

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