Jul 24, 2013
I like simple games.
Don’t get me wrong; I don’t mind difficult pieces, as playing those give me an all too short feeling of superiority. Still, simple games that are basic in presentation yet challenging are probably my favorite type. Bubble Box firmly fits into this category.
The game is a unique type of pick three game, involving balls of different colors that are generally grouped somewhat symmetrically around the playing area. In the very middle of the playing area is a hole that continually (and randomly) spits out a colored ball that matches one of the colors of the balls in the playing area. Using a finger to drag and “fling” or throw the ball, I have to try to make a set of three; doing so cause the set of three to pop and disappear, kind of how it works in Bejeweled.
The balls stick to balls of different colors (or, if it sticks to another ball of the same color that is itself stuck to a ball of another color). To make the game even more challenging, around the center hole is a dead area circumference; if a ball touches that area, the entire game is over.
Accuracy in flinging is definitely a plus; missing a ball to stick to means the ball will rebound off the walls until/unless it makes contact with a live ball. This can be bad, because there is a countdown clock that encourages speed. You keep getting balls to fling until you clear all the balls. Bank shots can be very useful (just like in pool or billiards) to dump spheres, and I also liked the star countdown that goes with the main countdown timer.
The graphics enhance the game. Obviously, good use of color is needed, and it is mostly received. As the game progresses, there are more subtle uses, like shading the play area so that extra attention has to be paid to colors of the ball. The animations are smooth and seem quite realistic. The board art did get very intricate.
This one of those games that was good enough for me to ignore the dopey mice that make up the backstory. Well done.