Dec 7, 2011
The first thing I will say about Quadratum is that at first it is very difficult. The second is that I cannot stop playing it. I have already lost at least an hour today alone just trying to hone my skills. This four-player game is simultaneously simple and very complex.
The game space is a field of multi-coloured tiles with arbitrary black tiles creating blockages. There are 7 colours to choose from, and the goal is to expand the territory that you occupy by changing your controlled tile colour to match that of the adjoining tiles and link them up. At each turn you select a new colour to try and connect to those coloured squares. You can only chose a colour that is not currently in use by another player, and so strategy here involves reaching out with your colour choices, but also putting in use a colour that your opponents need to complete their own grab for territory. This further complicate things, the gamemakers have incorporated attack bonuses hidden within the game space. Capturing certain unmarked titles can add a weapon to your arsenal. A few examples of the attacks: shuffle the untaken tile colours on screen; freeze your opponents to give yourself an extra turn; blow up a section of an opponent’s territory, after which the space is filed with a random assortment of tile colours. The attacks are wonderful when you can use them, and maddening when used against you. The tide can turn very quickly when a bomb cuts you off from the wonderful combo that you were building toward. The game is complete when all tiles are captured by the players, and then points are awarded for each tile captured.
The gamemakers themselves call the game addictive. And while that sounds like a brag, I assure you that it is merely fact. Too often while writing this review I would open the game to refer back to some aspect of it…only to find myself playing for 10 minutes at a time. The longer you play the better you get as seeing more moves ahead, and at anticipating what your opponents may try to further their own game. So far I have only played against the in-game AI, but I would actually love to go up against some friends in the tournament mode.
What can I criticism about this game? I think only the fact that I can’t stop playing when I need to be doing just about anything else with my day.