I can't stop touching this minimalist, mysterious puzzle game

Simogo's new game is a clever, compelling puzzle about splitting squares. But the crafty, beloved studio might have more in store...

SPL-T is a brand-new black-and-white puzzle game for iOS about the simplicity of splitting up space. You're compelled to touch and divide squares much in the way you create harmony out of the table rings left by a soda glass, or straight lines from a pile of spilled salt. It's impossible to stop playing with.

The core concept is very simple to grasp: Touch a square to split it. Your first touch creates a vertical line, your second a horizontal line, and then a vertical line again. This alternating arrangement lets you plan your dissection, and you aim to split the board as many times as possible before you run out of moves. Ultimately you're scored based on your number of splits while you make even grids—difficult to describe, but instantly sensible and evident to the hand and eye when you try it for yourself.


It's designed by Simogo, who is is my favorite mobile game developer. The two-person team is just as at home making visually-distinctive, narratively-driven works like Device 6 and The Sailor's Dream as they are with cute action games like Beat Sneak Bandit or Bumpy Road. Says the developer:

In many ways SPL-T is one of the most "purposeful" games we've made. Every tiny decision has had long discussions. We've weighed arguments against each other. We've put in and out features. Tested what feels like one million rules. A simple thing like removing the restart feature might seem like a miss – but it's deliberately not there, because we want every round of SPL-T to count. We want you to get better at it and get a deeper understanding for it every time you play it. We don't want you to look at online leaderboards at pointless numbers. We want you to talk to friends playing SPL-T, and we hope it will invite you to talk about strategies together.

The developer's crafty reputation has led many to suggest that there has to be more to SPL-T than meets the eye—after all, why should a game of black and white lines and minimal sound have a 69 MB file size? Pure puzzle endeavor or not, I recommend getting on board.

SPL-T is $2.99 on the App Store.