Fez is a 2012 Xbox LIVE Arcade puzzle platformer by indie game designer Phil Fish, 5 years in development. The game has players control Gomez, a small white... thing who lives happily in his peaceful, floating 2D village until he comes across a magical fez which reveals a shocking truth to him: the world is actually 3-Dimensional. The fez allows him to perceive the 3D world and shift dimensions, but he can still only move across 2D planes. Using this newfound ability, he sets off to collect several pieces of a giant magical cube that has been scattered all over the land, causing the fabric of reality to tear apart.Fez went multiplatform on May 1st, 2013, with the release of a PC version of the game. Fish said that Mac and Linux versions would eventually follow, but the release date was still to be decided. The game later came out on PS3, PS 4, and Playstation Vita on March 25th, 2014. There was also to be a sequel to the game, simply titled Fez II. However, in late July, after being insulted by Marcus Beer AKA Annoyed Gamer, Phil Fish exploded into a very angry tirade on Twitter, and then outright quit the entire video game industry and cancelled Fez II.
This game provides examples of:
100% Completion: Collecting all of the cubes, anti-cubes, artifacts, and heart-shaped polygons.
2½D: The game blends 2D with 3D to create spatial puzzles.
3-D Movie: Beat the game twice to unlock a stereoscopic vision mode.
Alien Geometries: Fez is all about this. Although it's a 2D character getting used to 3D geometries. It gives a rough idea of what it would be like having a a 4D entity phasing around 3 dimensions.
Bonus points for Dot's design; since Dot is a tesseractnote tesseract is to cube what cube is to square (i.e. a dimension higher), the game contains a 2D character navigating a 3D environment with a 4D companion.
Awesome Music: invoked Pretty much the entire soundtrack, in all its retro, melodic beauty.
Evolutionary Levels: The village classroom contains a depiction of evolution from single-pixel organisms to people. The equivalent of proto-humans had narrow, vertical heads, and their ruins (behind the four-cube door) seem to indicate that they were only aware of two dimensions. All the people seen and depicted outside of Village have heads of square proportions. It is implied that the people of Village, with their flat, horizontal heads, are mutants who lost awareness of the third dimension when they devolved.
Excuse Plot: Something bad happened. Now go find cubes. Or something.
There is a big block of unreadable alien text at the start of the game before the "something bad" happens. If you translate it, it doesn't reveal much more than "if something goes wrong, fix it."
Gainax Ending: Ending can't be different than the premise allows it to have.
Game-Breaking Bug: Sadly enough, lots of players have been having their saves corrupted by patches whenever close to the completion of the game. The only option is to create an entirely new game, which then is invulnerable to the patch.
Guide Dang It: Unless you're a rocket scientist working at NASA, your chances of finding everything in this game without a walkthrough are slim to none.
The heart cubes take the absolute cake.
To elaborate, one of the puzzles has a dozen obtuse hints scattered throughout the game as text, one of the puzzles requires translation from binary to ASCII, and we have no idea what the hint was supposed to be for the puzzle that was brute-forced.
And the creator has confirmed that not all of the puzzles have been solved. Some new behaviors were discovered after decompiling the PC version, there are a few puzzle hints that are not attached to any known puzzle, and nobody has any idea what the "crop circles" mean.
Kill Screen: An intentional one happens at the beginning of the game when the giant cube breaks apart, complete with a fake OS reboot, no less. This also happens if you reach the ending without collecting all the cubes.
Upon starting New Game+, players who receive the fez a second time are treated to sunglasses descending onto Gomez's face in a manner identical to the "Deal With It" meme.
The library from Myst makes an appearance. A well in one area looks suspiciously like a warp pipe, which leads to an area with a Game Boy color palette and style. A poster in Gomez's house appears to be the title screen from The Legend of Zelda with the text removed. As well, the weird owls and various characters' wariness of them, along with a room with walls covered in red curtains could be a Shout-Out to Twin Peaks.
To elaborate: we're talking about the infamous clock puzzle. At the top of a certain room there's a cubic clock with four hands, and when they reach the top, an anti-cube (one for each hand) appears; the fastest hand cycles once every minute, the others cycle respectively: every hour, every day and... every week! If you're playing on Xbox 360, that means either waiting, or restarting the game after changing the time and date while offline. Sounds tedious yet? At least in the PC version, if you alt-tab and change the system clock, the in-game clock hands will react immediately when you resume the game...