Review – 7th Sector (Xbox One)

Although it came out in 2019 on PC, 7th Sector is a brand new game to consoles that has gone mostly under the radar since its initial release. 7th Sector is a dark and eerie puzzle game where the player is essentially just a spark. A spark with the option to move and jump between wires and hardware, taking control of different items and puzzles. A spark that takes human form when inside a TV screen and can die from error screens. It’s not the most simple concept to put into words, but then it’s not a simple game.

Start Screen

May be a bit difficult to read.

7th Sector is a complicated game that will test how much attention you pay to your surroundings and how even the most subtle of visual or audio cues needs to be watched out for. The game itself is very dark, taking place in a highly advanced era with technology always watching over everyone. In order for you to progress, you’ll have to pass a multitude of different puzzles. These include turning on the right music at full blast, knowing how to add and subtract, knowing how to connect pipes, and listening to sound cues for when to hit buttons. Probably the best part of the puzzles is the fact that if one is repeated, it’s quite a while away and significantly more difficult, without ever being overly frustrating.

Little Robot

I love this little robot thing.

The use of music and sound effects in 7th Sector is quite nice. During sections where sound is not necessary for the puzzle, you have dialogue between characters, the sound of rain and the outdoors. During portions where sound is needed for puzzle solving, other sounds effects are still around, but the game does a good job with its sound mixing to make what you need to hear sound distinct from the rest. When in doubt, stop, pay attention, take a listen, it might give away if you’re missing something.

There’s a section in the game when you head underground into a warehouse-type area. While it’s clear that the warehouse is automated, it sounds and looks busy. You have other machines moving boxes and other things around. You can see and hear all the movements and see different machines that look alive. It’s a world that feels lived in and between what you can see and what you can hear, it makes 7th Sector even more enticing.

Numbers Puzzle

Pay no attention to the man in the back, he’s just having a nap… in his own blood.

7th Sector is not for the squeamish. If you’re not a fan of the idea of death, not a fan of blood, of overall strong imagery, and just want a happy-go lucky puzzle game, Portal or Lightmatter might be more up your alley. If you’re looking for a well thought-out, very well-put together puzzle game, however, 7th Sector will certainly scratch the itch. While it might be fairly linear, there are lots of little details to keep an eye out for which will definitely warrant a second visit to make sure you see each of the endings.

Graphics: 8.0

Gritty and dark without straining the eyes. Everything, especially the backgrounds, feels alive and detailed.

Gameplay: 8.0

Less is more, as puzzles don’t require you to bend over backwards. They can be really challenging and still have the answer right in front of you.

Sound: 8.5

7th Sector makes excellent use of sounds in puzzles, from sound cues to full use of music. The background characters have stories that can be heard, if you’re patient.

Fun Factor: 9.0

7th Sector has intuitive puzzles, interesting ways to mix side-scrolling gameplay with other elements, plus shocking and alarming imagery to keep your mind wondering.

Final Verdict: 8.5

7th Sector is available now on Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.

Reviewed on Xbox One.

A copy of 7th Sector was provided by the publisher.