Archaica Path of Light Review (Switch)

Game: Archaica: The Path Of Light
Genre: Puzzle | Strategy
System: Nintendo Switch ( Also available on Steam & Consoles)
Developers |Publishers: Two Mammoths| Drageus Game
Age Rating: EU 3|USA E10| AUS G
Price: EU €14.99| UK £ 8.99|USA $14.99|AUS $22.50 |CA $19.83
Release Date: 24th April 2020

Review code used with many thanks to Drageus Games. 

Archaica The Path of Light was released on Steam in 2017 by a new development company Two Mammoths. After a successful release of the game on Steam, this puzzle game now makes it way to the Nintendo Switch.

Become the Light Bearer

In Archaica: The Path Of Light you are the chosen one, a light bearer who must journey along the titular Path of Light to save the world from impending disaster. The story is about you, the Chosen One; however, you aren’t fighting monsters, or leveling up to boost your skills. Instead, you’re solving a series of challenging puzzles to direct light towards certain places, all the while learning more about the world around you.

The story is told throughout the game by finding hidden hieroglyphics in each of the stages. As you find each hieroglyphic you’re drip-fed a small section of the story-line, but more on that shortly.

Mirrors and Light

As the light bearer, to play the game, you must manipulate light beams by using mirrors to guide the light beams and illuminate crystals. This, in turn, will open the Lightwell (a circle with lights around it) which allows you to progress to the next stage. The mirrors you move come in a few different variations: such as 90 and 45 degree mirrors. And that’s not all, as you progress through the stages more mechanics are introduced such as filters, power boosters, colour-change crystals, and beam splitters.

As you light up each target, a portion of the Lightwell lights up. When you’ve successfully lit up all targets, and the Lightwell is fully lit, you click on it to trigger a cutscene. Sometimes it will also trigger an animation of the level’s stonework moving around and taking you to the next level.

Mix of Genres

Archaica: The Path Of Light is a mix of genres. It’s a puzzle game at its heart, but it also has shades of a hidden object game as you have to search for the three little white crystals on each stage. When they are found they’re slotted into place around a plinth; these will give you three hints on how to solve the puzzle.

When you do use a hint, and I’m sure you will, you highlight five squares at once and then a circle indicating where you should place a mirror or a beam splitter appears. But what it’s doesn’t tell you is what to place or how to place it, that’s left up to you to decide. The hints are more like nudges to kick-start your brain again and most of the time these hints are enough to help solve the puzzle. Once you use the three hints they need time to recharge before you can use them again on a stage.

Lots to Search for and See

As I’ve already mentioned, you search each stage to find the hieroglyphs to reveal more of the storyline. Well I say storyline, but it’s actually more lore than a storyline. You don’t have to find all the hieroglyphs to get through the level,  but you could miss a key part of the history of the world if you don’t look for them all. However, since there is no timer or time limit for each puzzle you can spend as much, or as little, time as you want looking for the hieroglyphs.

I must admit I found the fact that the puzzles are not timed a little bit odd as it doesn’t blend with the story lore. After all, you’re the light bearer out to save the world from impending disaster… but hey, take your time, there’s no rush. On the other hand, not having a timer is really nice as you can study the puzzle for as long as you need without the pressure of a timer counting down.

Some stages also feature a stone key to unlock. These appear either on their own or in pairs, but you don’t have to unlock them as they are optional. It is worth unlocking them all as you’re given access to an extra set of harder levels to puzzle over.

All your progress and achievements are tracked on the totem. As you progress through the game more things are unlocked on the totem such as: “collect fifteen devices for the Almanach” or “complete forty levels by finding all the collectibles”. This in and of itself adds extra replay value to the game, as you can try to complete all the achievements. Some, of course, will be completed by playing through the game, and others you can return to to complete at another time.

As you journey through the game’s realms, you will visit various locations such as the hills, desert city, islands, crystal mines, and more. All of them are visually beautiful with their own unique looks adding lots of variety to the puzzle’s surroundings.  Each area introduces a new game mechanic into the puzzle, and this stops the game from being dull as there is always something new popping up in the later levels of the game. There are forty two levels, with sixty five puzzles in all; more than enough to keep you puzzling for a while.

Visuals and Controls

I really like the look of Archaica: Path of Light, with its old-world look and broken buildings; this fits well with the lore of the story. Every level is gorgeous with its own unique style with light reflecting off objects and the surroundings.

The game controls well using the Joy-Cons, and it runs smoothly. The music for Archaica: Path Of Light is actually very relaxing to listen to while your puzzling away. Sound effects are spot on, neither music nor SFX are intrusive while playing, but only add to the atmosphere of the game.


The world of Archaica: The Path of Light  is a gorgeous and remarkable place using simple mechanics involving beams of light and mirrors that is brilliantly done.

You’ll need your spatial awareness and problem solving skills to be on form and working well to solve the puzzles. I never felt frustrated with the puzzles; between having the hints available to use, and no timer, you’re free to move the mirrors and splitters around the level at your own pace.

Adding in new challenges and new concepts as the game progresses, the game always has something fresh ahead for the player. This stops the repetitive nature of some games settling in, and turns an otherwise simple premise into quite the detailed challenge.

If you a big fan of puzzle games, I would recommend Archaica: The Path of Light take a spot on your Nintendo Switch.

Final Verdict: I like it a lot



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