Dec 6, 2013
There’s no point beating about the bush when talking about Dream of Pixels. It’s Tetris but with a twist. There’s no other way to explain it.
Dream of Pixels is a puzzle game where you have to place familiar look shapes onto the screen. Unlike the game it clearly derives from, these shapes don’t drop down from the top of the screen, so there’s no need to shift your shapes from left to right before they hit the bottom. Instead, Dream of Pixels slowly (at first) scrolls the entire screen upwards. Your job is to ensure that no empty spaces make their way to the bottom of the screen. This means you need to use your shapes to ensure that each line is full of blocks.
In Dream of Pixels‘ defence, it works quite well and is just different enough to stand on its own legs. What also helps the game is the extra selection of game modes on offer. The two you’ll play the most will be Classic and Puzzle.
Classic just wants to see how many lines you can put together in one run. As you’d expect, the speed at which the screen scrolls gets faster and faster until you eventually let one empty space hit the bottom, whereupon the screen fades to white.
Puzzle, as the name implies, tests your IQ by giving you a set number of pre-determined shapes. These shapes need to fit into the spaces on the screen, and whilst this starts off simply enough (4 square spaces on the screen and 4 square shapes given) it soon ramps up the difficulty and will have you considering how best to use your shapes to plug up all of the gaps.
Another thing that helps is that the controls work really rather well. Placing a shape onto the screen isn’t the hardest of things to do when you’ve got a touch-screen device to play on, but Dream of Pixels makes it entirely clear as to just how your shape will be placed when you let go of your device. This may not seem like much, but for those of you that know how finicky touch-controls can be sometimes, this is nothing but good news.
The presentation and the audio of the game are nothing ground-breaking though are nice enough. The whole game, trying to live up to the ‘dream’ within its name, has a very gentle feel to it with clouds and skies of different hues used throughout. The only time it won’t appear gentle and relaxing is when you’re rushing to place a shape as pesky gap makes it way to the bottom of the screen.
Dream of Pixels just about avoids being a Tetris rip-off by having enough of its own good ideas and the tight controls along with solid presentation helps too. It’s hardly the stuff dreams of made of, but then it’s nowhere near being a nightmare. This is an extremely capable puzzle game.