IceBurgers Review

IceBurgers Review

Oct 25, 2013

IceBurgers is an environmental tale. Two ships collide in the Antarctic, spewing burgers and letters, and a penguin has to clean it up. Alrighty.

Interestingly enough, what makes this game unique is what probably is its best feature: the lack of frills. It rocks a simple motif and features even simpler gameplay, and, as such, can be a formidable time waster.

The gameplay is an atypical mix of crossword puzzle and Scrabble. A square grid of 25 tiled letters makes up the playing area, and words are supposed to be created via swiping a finger across letters in fairly liberal fashion. When a word is formed, it lightens up and explodes, and the tiled letters are replaced randomly by falling tiles from ice2above.

Now, after the first word is formed, a penguin shows up as a placekeeper of sorts. It ends up at the tile that was occupied by the last letter of the last word formed. The kicker is that all subsequent word formed must start with a letter tile that is adjacent to the penguin. Since the penguin is almost always moving, this adds a degree of difficulty to the gameplay, as it isn’t possible to just spell a word anywhere at anytime; the places where a new word can emanate from in the grid are dependent on where the penguin is. On another level, this also opens the door to interesting strategy, as moving the penguin around to more optional spots can be quite the challenge.

The game UI is dressed in blue, with white accents. The animations are not explosive, but get the job done. As noted earlier, there are not too many visual distractions, and that helps with the gameplay to a degree.

All in all, the word that keeps popping up is “simple.” It’s easy to understand, and needs little prep to play. I say well done.

SteamBirds Review

SteamBirds Review

Jan 5, 2011

SteamBirds takes you through the purported history of early 20th-century aerial combat, as you command a fleet of red biplanes in combat against enemies who had the gall to paint their vehicles other colors, like blue and green. The gameplay is turn-based strategy, but not in the grid-based way that the name “turn-based strategy” may make you think of. You control the flight path of your planes, setting their line of flight and activating any powerup abilities you want to use (that let you go faster, do a u-turn, be invincible, or other abilities) before each turn, then all units in play make their move simultaneously. It’s less turn-based strategy and more “red light/green light”-based strategy. Your goal is obviously to take out all the enemy planes without being taken out yourself, and trying not to lose any planes or take any damage to earn as many stars as possible.