Poly Bridge is a funky physics simulator from developer Dry Cactus and features an endearing set of building challenges with an extremely simple objective overall. That objective? Get the vehicles from one side of a stretch of water to the other. There is a sandbox mode in which the player can create bridge puzzles and upload them to the Steam Workshop for others to try and there is a campaign mode, where you work through increasingly complicated bridge puzzles and get introduced to new materials to construct your bridges out of.
The gameplay is simple enough and the difficulty curve is reasonable until you get about half way through the first bit of the campaign, then things start to get fairly challenging. The idea with each bridge build is to not only build it so that it stays intact while cars cross it, but to try and build it within a certain budget. The budget differs for each bridge and for the most part it’s not too difficult to stay within it until the puzzles start to become more difficult. With an intuitive UI and easy to use controls, the gameplay is relaxing and simple to get into, until Poly Bridge really starts to tug at your brain wires a bit more excessively that is. The building is done on the build screen and once you have completed your build you can switch to the simulation screen to see if your design holds up or to watch it crumble and fall into the water.
Poly Bridge's graphics are very simple, but fit in very well with the game. A soft color palette and clean lines make the simulation screen pleasant to look at despite it’s very basic graphics. The build screen is set out like a drawing board which makes assembling your bridges a clear and simple process with the measurement grid provided.
The soundtrack is a mixture of instrumental cover versions of fairly popular songs by artists such as Jack Johnson, which adds to the relaxed and jovial feel of the game perfectly and to some extent calms the growing rage induced by some the the bridge puzzles.
To some extent the build screen in Sandbox mode is somewhat confusing for a few minutes, but puzzling it out isn’t difficult. Difficulty-wise there is a fairly steep and sudden jump, but Poly Bridge is a very methodical game so perseverance and brainpower are simply required to figure out what it is you need to do.
All in all, PolyBridge is a great game to sit down with a for short while in an evening and offers the player with some challenging obstacles to overcome while also encouraging creativity. An enjoyable experience, however, similar games can be found for free both on Steam and as flash games, but Poly Bridge does seem to hold it’s own.