''Every so often, a gamer can find themselves in the mood for a particular flavor of game, and these effects can be especially pronounced when one finds oneself surrounded by entries of that genre. Between Braid, the announcement of Henry Hatsworth, and next month's scheduled release of The Fool and His Money, it's an understatement to say I've had an increased enthusiasm for puzzle games lately. Thus, when the opportunity came to review The Magic Toy Chest by Graduate Games, a "physics-based puzzler featuring addictive and open gameplay" inspired by classic titles like The Incredible Machine, I jumped at the chance. Yes, the child-oriented theme is a little outside of my demographic segment, but a good puzzle transcends markets, and you're never too old to screw around with an open-ended physics game. On the other hand, open-ended physics games are pretty easy to find for free these days, and The Magic Toy Chest sells for $19.95. So, just how magical a chest are we talking about, here?
The Magic Toy Chest, as a child-friendly game, naturally boasts that it is "for the whole family." This much, at least, is quite true; the game is accessible, intuitive, and unimposing, presenting a colorful world full of amusing toys and an extremely basic premise and goal. Further, it can be played on most any Windows PC - its system requirements are so basic as to fit any family computer from the last decade or so (Pentium 300MHz or better). Parents needn't worry about their kids running this game, nor playing it - nothing even remotely objectionable can be found in The Magic Toy Chest, whose sole plot point is "The house is a mess. Clean it up."