Luminux Review

Luminux Review

Jun 10, 2014

Luminix is a story of saving worlds pleasantly cloaked on match-3 robes.

The backstory is simple, but players should be happy to know that their efforts in this game go to keeping a solar system alive; matching the tiles releases energy that prevents disastrous cosmic meltdowns.

The gameplay deviates somewhat — positively — from “standard” match-3 gameplay. The playing area is a grid made to fit the square tile playing pieces in a 5 X 4 manner, and the luminescent tiles pop up randomly on the grid. The tiles themselves come in different colors: green, yellow, blue, purple and orange, and the key is to line up three or more sets of the same color to dissolve them, release energy and score points.

Moving the tiles to be matched can be done by tap, holding and dragging tiles to where one wants them to be. With lum2tiles popping up all over the place, quick movements are key, and it is also strategic to keep the board as empty as possible by matching early and often. Keeping holes open is another valuable concept, as it is tough to find space to manipulate movement when the board is filled up. Getting fixated on a color when the board is getting crowded can backfire too, as there are usually several possible combinations at any given time. As one progresses, the action gets wild, with quick, continual gestures needed to continue the matching which makes longevity possible.

If the board gets completely filled, the run is over, and points are tallied. When particular point thresholds are met, a player can level up, and it’s interesting how the game tells players how close they are to the next rank in percentage points.

I think the gesture controls are intuitive, but could use a sensitivity meter; landscape play functionality might also be welcome. All in all though, its simplicity is hard to dislike.

Caveboy Escape Review

Caveboy Escape Review

Mar 20, 2014

Caveboy Escape is an enjoyable combo-type puzzler.

It takes the match-3 paradigm, and tosses in some tile travel to create a fun series of puzzle situations. The tutorial does a fine job of walking players through the finer aspects of the gameplay. The successive playing areas are rectangular, and made up of smaller tiles. The tiles are of different colors seemingly randomly placed, and there are usually two special points, start tile (point A and an end tile (point B). Facilitating the escape means moving the avatar from point A (usually at the bottom of the screen) to point B (towards the top). cave1

Now, movement is guided by one major guideline: the avatar moves in steps of three tiles of the same color. So, to get from the beginning to the end, one has to find a set of three tiles (end on end or adjacent), and then another set of three, and so on and so forth, till you get to a tile that is adjacent to he end tile, from which escape can be made. Control is done by gesture swiping, and the playing piece can only move in the approved manner; if the move does not follow the rules in an attempted direction, the playing piece won’t move. Moves can be reversed when progress seemes impossible.

The first level or two are easy, and as mentioned, the tutorial plays a part. A quick visual look definitely helps to take stock of the situation and plan moves. Eventually, the gameplay gets harder, with layered puzzles and interesting angles like timed problems with potions as helpers. Levels can all be replayed, and getting the coveted three-star ranking is a huge goal.

Even with the extras, the game can feel a bit monotonous at times, but in short spurts, it is a fun, engaging time waster that is worth a look.

Tiles Puts Your Quickness To The Test

Tiles Puts Your Quickness To The Test

May 6, 2013

Get ready to test your reflexes on your own or against friends in Tiles. In this game, you’ll be able to play against friends in three different versus modes or improve your quickness in 3 practice modes. You can even customize your own game with three free tile sets. It’s your job to press the correct tiles as they appear before your friends do.

Twisted Arrows Review

Twisted Arrows Review

Jul 21, 2011

Logic games have been around forever. There hasn’t been a computer released in the last thirty years that didn’t have a brain-teasing, head-scratching, rage-inducing logic puzzler built for it, probably created by some evil masochist who hates all human life and wants it to suffer. That’s what Twisted Arrows wants to be, but unfortunately it falls just short.

The premise is simple. You have to move a ball from one point of the screen to another, using the tiles that have been laid out in front of you. Each of these tiles has a number of arrows on them, showing you the ways you can travel once you’ve landed on them. The twist is that when you land on one of those tiles, it’s going to spin round.

All of the tiles are different colors, and those colors represent the number of degrees they’ll spin once you land on them. It’s sometimes hard to keep track of which tile does what, and the game could really do with an always on-screen list that tells you, especially when one wrong move will lead to an untimely death and the single most annoying sound effect ever committed to code.

The thing you’ll notice whilst you play through Twisted Arrows is that, after the first few simple levels, it throws you straight into the deep end and expects you to be able to swim. Logic is often abandoned in favour of trial, error, and expletives, as you try and navigate an enormous maze of twisting tiles and hellish combinations.

It’s a shame, because the idea behind the game is impressive and interesting. What’s lacking is a smooth difficulty curve and a consistency between the mechanic and the player. With better designed levels, Twisted Arrows would be an excellent game, as it is, it’s a bit too confusing to earnestly recommend.

WordWise Pro Review With Updated Cross Platform Play

WordWise Pro Review With Updated Cross Platform Play

Sep 28, 2010

WordWise for Android is a casual two player word game resembling that grand daddy of word games known as Scrabble. Mobile multiplayer turn-based word games have been growing in popularity ever since the smash hit “Words With Friends” was released on Apple’s iOS platform. Words With Friends has yet to port over to Android but that hasn’t stopped developers from riding the gravy train.

While each of the games from this genre offer their own experience, WordWise has managed to do what its competitors have failed to do: offer cross platform play. This recent breakthrough is bound to spark curiosity and so, without further ado, I present WordWise.