Jul 3, 2014
Blek is a smooth, atypical game that does a lot with seemingly little.
The gameplay is fairly interesting. The intro levels throw one right in: in a nutshell, there are colored dots that can be collected. The collection tool is a black line that is created by gesture, and this line, which can be fairly irregular, has the unique ability to loop over and over, much like a slinky on an escalator. If it hits the sides, it rebounds backwards, and keeps going unless it hits the “floor” or “ceiling.” The initial basic idea is to create just the right line that collects the colored circles by contact.
Like any good puzzle game, though, this game has some interesting wrinkles. The major one is the eventual presence of black dots. These black dots absorb the prancing line, and more or less end the run unsuccessfully. Thus, the game then morphs into the dual challenge of collecting the colored dots while avoiding the black ones. At first, the placements of the black dots make solutions relatively easy, in that it they are not too difficult to avoid and are well spaced out. As this leveled game goes on though, the black dots define the game with their placements; they get smaller, and their arrangements become more intricate, and require well thought out loops/lines to solve.
The animations are smooth, and one might be forgiven for making out a game of moving lines in and of itself. The game is forgiving of such side ventures, allowing one to ry failed levels continually until solved, at which point the next level is unlocked.
It’s hard not to appreciate the innate simplicity of the game. I love the looping mechanism, and the adherence to general laws of physics. On the other hand, I think the game could have a challenge portion akin to leaderboards.
At $2.99, the upfront cost sans in-app purchasing is something else to appreciate; to be fair, this is one game that doesn’t need a whole lot more.