Jul 1, 2011
Most video games rely heavily on conflict to drive the gameplay. Typically, the player has to overcome enemies, or beat other players in order to win the game, but Gem Miner Dig Deeper takes a slightly different approach pitting the player against the environment.
Gem Miner Dig Deeper tasks players with gathering and selling precious metals and gems so that they can purchase better equipment which will allow them to dig deeper into the earth. The object of the game is to dig down to the giant amethyst, which, presumably, is worth enough money that your miner can hang up his pick ax and retire to a tropical island somewhere.
At face value, the concept sounds simple, and a little dull, but managing your inventory, digging tunnels and bringing your treasures safely to the surface can be a challenging and engaging experience. Your backpack can only hold so much loot, and your miner will run out of stamina as you dig tunnels and travel through the mine. Throw in the need to throw up a support to prevent an unstable tunnel from collapsing, and Gem Miner Dig Deeper becomes a surprisingly enjoyable experience.
The controls can be a bit tedious but ultimately they’re effective. Moving your miner left or right requires a tap of the screen. Each tap moves the miner one block in whichever direction you choose, and if there’s a block of dirt or ore in the miner’s way, he’ll dig through it. In order to gravel great distances you’ll find yourself tapping the screen frantically You can disable digging if you want to cover a lot of distance without accidentally digging though an important block, and you’ll be glad that feature exists. It’s far to easy to break a block that supports a ladder, or accidentally break through into a different tunnel.
Visually, Gem Miner Dig Deeper offers a simple, but effective graphical style. It’s easy to distinguish the various ores and gems you’ll encounter based on their appearance, and watching the miner scurry around the screen never gets old. Unfortunately, the sound design wasn’t given the same attention. There’s no music in the game, and the sound effects range from dull to slightly jarring.
Gem Miner Dig Deeper builds an enjoyable gameplay experience around the man vs. environment conflict. It’s rare to find a game that doesn’t challenge the player to fight enemies, or defeat other players, but Gem Miner Dig Deeper proves that a game without traditional conflict can still be a lot of fun.