Version Reviewed: 1.0.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5s
Graphics / Sound Rating:
User Interface Rating:
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BEAT DRIFT presents itself as a perspective-driven tunnel maze that relies on the player's own reaction rate, as well as their spacial awareness, to get them to the end. Set in a long, square-shaped tunnel, the aim is to guide a glowing particle through a series of oncoming obstacles. These obstacles are each made up of individual blocks, with each block representing a different segment of the grid tunnel.
In order to allow players to pass through, some of these blocks have been removed - and not every one of these gaps is positioned the same. Sometimes the gap presented will be so large that they can take their time in deciding which way to go in order to reach it successfully; while other times the gap presented will force them to make a split-second decision. Crashing into any one of these blocks will see them returned to the start.
BEAT DRIFT follows the same basic mechanic that other similar perspective tunnel puzzlers use, seeing the player take advantage of their own logic in to determine which route is best to take. The game's controls are super-simple and easy to use. Taping and holding left will move vertically up the tunnel's left wall, and similarly tapping and holding right will make it go in the other direction. It's worth noting that these controls work great, and I actually found I was able to play the game with just one hand (in places). This is because the glowing particle will move around the tunnel for however long one keeps hold of either side of the screen.
Unlike other titles in its genre though, in BEAT DRIFT the whole tunnel will systematically rotate and tilt after each successful pass of two or more obstacles. This means that not only do players have to make a split-decision as to what direction would be best in light of the incoming obstacle, but also what direction would be best to take based on the next direction the tunnel will shift.
I'm not going to lie, I found the difficulty level of BEAT DRIFT tough. Even when set to “Easy” the tunnel appeared to move so fast that avoiding the incoming obstacles was seriously challenging - even in the initial stages. While this was frustrating at times, I found this “issue” was actually the main driver for me to keep coming back in the end.
BEAT DRIFT is a solid maze puzzler for those who have the time and want to kill half an hour. It's visually nice and has built-in Game Center achievement support for those who want to keep up with their best record and percentage of completion. The game's mix of difficulty and the repetitive nature of both its included puzzles and soundtrack may put some off, but overall I enjoyed BEAT DRIFT for the average maze puzzler that it wants to be.