Yin Yang Review

Find the right moves to slide pieces around a 2D board and join the halves in Yin Yang.

A review copy of Yin Yang was provided for this review. No compensation was involved and all thoughts are my own.

Format: PC via Steam
First playthrough time: 1.5 hours

Yin Yang. Level 29 with 3 pieces and toggleable walls. The minimum move count is 48.

Released Jan 10th, 2021 by Thedox Games

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Quick Overview

Major Pros:
  • Simple yet complex puzzles
Major Cons:
  • No undo button
Minor Pros:
  • Clean UI
Minor Cons:
  • Short
  • Swipe controls with mouse
Yin Yang. Level select showing 45 levels, and whether the minimum move count has been achieved in each.

There are 45 levels in total

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In-Depth Review

Yin Yang is a short puzzle game where players slide white circles into black circles to merge them and create yin-yang symbols. There are 45 levels in total and each level has a target number of moves for players that want a greater challenge. Most levels have multiple symbols to complete and stacking the white circles is often part of the solution, meaning there’s an optimal (and sometimes necessary) order to complete the symbols. The game is fairly short on its own, but players who go for optimal moves on every level will get more playtime.

Yin Yang. Level 34 with 3 pieces and a set of teleporters. The minimum move count is 31.

Level 34 with a minimum move count of 31 is one where resetting is annoying

The biggest frustration for me was the lack of an undo button. While there’s a reset option to start a puzzle over, often I only wanted to go back a few moves. Resetting becomes somewhat tedious, especially when considering a few of the puzzles have a minimum move set of +50 moves. This was somewhat exacerbated by the fact that moving pieces required an unnatural swipe motion with the mouse, there appeared to be no option to select a piece and then slide it with the arrow keys.

Yin Yang. Level 9 with two pieces, one of which is already completed.

Completed pieces merge to form Yin Yang symbols

The user interface of Yin Yang has a very clean minimalist style. I feel this suits the game well as the puzzles are the focus and there’s not a lot to customize. However, a simple volume slider is often appreciated. I liked the soft color palette and softer lines of the levels, as these were easier on the eyes. The one confusion I had with the interface was I didn’t understand what the move counter was the first time I saw it. Luckily it wasn’t too hard to figure out.

Yin Yang. Quote from Philip Zimbardo saying: Good and evil is the Yin and Yang of the human condition.

A few quotes are scattered throughout the game

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Recommendation

Overall, I found Yin Yang to be a very pleasant experience. The puzzles were simple in concept, but sufficiently complex to execute, particularly when going for the minimum number of moves. Although it should be noted that the game is fairly short. The interface is very clean and soft, although I’d have loved an undo button and an option to control the pieces with the keyboard instead of the mouse. I recommend Yin Yang to puzzle enthusiasts looking for a shorter game.

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