Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A Visual Catalog of Threes! Clones

If you follow gaming news, you have probably read about the big drama spurred by the developers of Threes!, who posted a detailed history of the development of their game, to show how long it took them to create it, compared to how quickly it was copied. It's a very interesting read, especially if you are a game designer, so I'd encourage everyone to take a look at it. Threes might look simple, but the process that bought to its final state was far from simple.
Threes!, released February 6th
The one thing I don't like about this story is how all the attention has been put on 2048, calling it a rip-off of Threes. This post was initially going to be about how I don't agree with that, but attempting to prove my point I turned it into a collection of real clones of Threes, so I'll focus on those for now and talk about 2048 another time.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Update: Lazors 2.3

The beautiful Lazors has been updated again, adding a new type of block, the Portal!
The new block does what you would expect from any well behaved portal.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Review: Hard Logic for iPhone and iPad

I'm fond of puzzle games that just throw the players into the action and let them figure out what to do, without lengthy tutorials. Hard Logic by Maxim Urusov surely delivers on that front.
To be honest, I believe that the lack of a tutorial is more due to lack of polish rather than to a deliberate artistic expression, since the game is really bare bones, even lacking a title on the main menu (though it has an "Exit" button which is rarely seen in iOS apps!). Regardless, it worked for me and the first couple of puzzles sucked me in.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Review: Lost Lands for iPhone and iPad

Lost Lands (also free) by Ryan Ding is a seriously challenging maze puzzle that suffered a bit from feature creep but is guaranteed to require all your attention.
The game is entirely based on a single, clever mechanic: L-shaped doors which can only be pushed. This is the same concept as Open Doors and Open Doors 2, two Flash games by Ozzie Mercado (thanks to Keith Harrison for pointing them out to me), but plays quite differently because of the puzzle layout.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Review: Niño for iPhone and iPad

Niño by Lennard Meijer, Reinder Nijhoff, and Peter Kortenhoeven is a nice turn-based strategy game which can be pretty challenging.
The movement rules are simple but they don't get boring because there are many different elements—maybe even too many.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Review: Impuzzible - Monochromatic Rectangles Puzzle for iPhone and iPad

If you want to play hands-on with a complex mathematical problem, look no further than Impuzzible - Monochromatic Rectangles Puzzle.
The stated goal is pretty simple: change the color of the blocks (choosing among four colors) in such a way that there are no rectangles whose four corners have the same color. The grids get increasingly larger, so how far can you go before giving up?