Today is a great day for freebies! Not only is the Appvent Calender featuring Blimp, a great steampunk-themed flying "platformer," but we also have a bonus treat. Elf Command, a simple holiday game, has just been released and is also free. EA, on the other hand, has Mystery Mania discounted to $0.99, but I'd pause before jumping for that one.
Let's start with Blimp. Like I said, it's got a steampunk theme, and as such you play the captain "Zed Pelin," who has his very own airship (er, blimp). The production values are top notch; eye candy and awesome music are both amply present. You have three main tasks: transport passengers, collect war supplies, and bomb enemies including tanks and other blimps. The gameplay is relatively simple but looks rather fun, and you can't beat Blimp for polish. Make sure you grab this one before the day's end, because it's an absolute steal.
Now for EA's Mystery Mania sale. The good news? The game's only $0.99, and it's packed with plenty of puzzles. The bad news? It's not quite up to par with EA's other releases. This "spooky" puzzle adventure was dubbed "slow" when we reviewed it in October:
The complete game consists of 27 spooky rooms full of “crazy conundrums, perilous traps, and intriguing secrets”. I can appreciate what they have tried to do here with the puzzles and solving the mystery, but it just was far too lackluster for me. All the puzzles seem to be at level 1, and when you progress from room to room, they don’t seem to get any harder. Most are so obvious and easily solved that you can, at times, feel like you are just going through the motions.
Still, that's not to say that Mystery Mania isn't worth looking at; $0.99 is a lot better than $3.99, and fans of lighter, simpler puzzles might find themselves happy.
We'll wrap up today with a bonus freebie: Elf Command, a new game from Retro Dreamer, makers of Sneezies and Eyegore's Eye Blast. It's simple, but both addicting and difficult as the game moves on. The screen is split into two halves; each half has a conveyor belt, a robot, and two shipping stations. Pictures flash on the shipping stations' screens, and you have to direct the robots to snatch the right toys from the conveyor belt. For a free holiday game, it's surprisingly fun. Definitely check this one out if you need another little time-waster.