Jan 6, 2012
Games don’t always need to have clever names to get us to notice them, but it does help. But while Puzzle 2 is very humble in name, but do not let that fool you. It is a puzzle game indeed, and one that you do not want to miss.
You are represented by a yellow block, and your goal is to make your way to the yellow square. Simple enough, until you see the game levels. Single tiles are laid out in paths, which you must navigate by flipping the block end-over-end. Be careful – done tiles are fragile and will crumble away if you land on them end-up. Falling off the board erases all of the progress that you have achieved, and so you must judge your moments careful to prevent it. There are also various obstacles to overcome, or conditions to meet. For example, there are triggers throughout the levels, but their tiles are blocked by lasers. Or perhaps a platform is unreachable until you land on a button that deploys new, connecting tiles. Some conditions can only be met if multiple triggers are performed at the same time. But no matter how impossible a level may seem, there is always a solution. Lasers can be blocked by the green ghost block, and multiple triggers can be done when you use the mirror block (every action taken by the yellow block is mirrored).
But the bigger challenge is personal. Again, every level has a solution, and the elation you feel on completion is quite heady. But you’ll stop short when you see that points are awarded based on how efficiently you completed the puzzle. It’s easy to get obsessed with doing it again, but this time better.
They’ve done some wonderful things with the use of special blocks and obstacles. The art is beautiful, and the lack of any ground or landscape around the game tiles actually creates a sense of almost vertigo, which is very impressive. Each stage is harder than the last, with countless levels to unlock and improve on. There is always a solution to every puzzle, and you’ll eventually get them all.
The changes they need to make (perhaps when there is a Puzzle 3) are to the controls. The blocks rotate in essentially 3 dimensions, and flicking your finger in the desired direction will cause the blocks to roll or fall over. However one wrong mood sends your block flying out into space, and you start again at square one. there are no do-overs, and it is uncomfortably easy to topple your block in the wrong direction. A lot of hard work can go to waste far too easily.