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Human Resource Machine
Casual, Strategy
Developer: Tomorrow Corporation
Publisher: Tomorrow Corporation
October 15th, 2015

I recently got in touch with the trio of developers known as Tomorrow Corporation, and they were kind enough to shoot a review key of their latest title, Human Resource Machine, over for some coverage. While visually the same as their last entry, Little Inferno, this title winds up being something largely different in comparison, leaving behind the fun pyro antics and deep story line for that of a mail room clerk climbing the corporate ladder with an additional background story line that is (hopefully) just as deep. But, after having played around with a few stages, I figured I’d share what I thought about it before the game drops, and explain why this title wasn’t what I initially thought it would be.

Of course, that last statement is more a thing of stupidity on my part because, really, this is resource managing. You are a new employee brought into the company, starting out in the mail room. You are literally taking items from the inbox over to the outbox year after year. However, after every stage, you climb a rung of the ladder and go up to the next floor, where the jobs become a little more difficult. You are tasked with doubling, making whole numbers become triple before sending out, even putting things in reverse order while making the process of transferring from the inbox to the outbox as efficient as possible by using less steps courtesy additional actions such as “add” and “jump”.

Yes, in the end, this is a math-heavy title. While not really an educational one, it does rely on your mental faculties to figure out the best and most efficient way to make the items from point a reach point b while completing the various sub tasks asked of you. I have yet to come across a time limit, thankfully, so there’s that to keep you from pulling your hair out. However, come the end of the day, later stages still had me setting up certain diagrams down on paper to try to figure out the most efficient way to move the packages around, which proved to be a lot more helpful than staring at the screen and calculating everything in my head.

Human Resource Machine is definitely a brain teaser those of us who hated school will dread booting back up, though, for most, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The cold, gothic art style reminiscent of old Addam’s Family comic strips paints an eerily oppressive business setting that makes the most menial tasks seem all the more trivial, yet somehow integral to the company’s success, as well as your own. The bigger, more complex the work load, the larger the satisfaction of a good day’s work when you finally pull it off, knowing that the world around you may very well not be exactly what you believe given the story that unfolds throughout, as well as one of the women that appears at times (bottom right of game artwork banner) looks a lot like an adult Sugar Plumps from Little Inferno. If you’re a fan of the developer’s previous titles, chances are you’ll still get a kick out of Human Resource Machine, regardless of whether or not you enjoy math and other calculations.

Digital review copy of this release provided by Tomorrow Corporation.