Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
Device Reviewed On: iPad
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Bitflip HD is an intriguing retooling of the match three game, breathing new life into a stale genre. The gameplay is well-designed, the music and sound effects contribute to the overall impact of the game, and the price of $.99 is just right. The only thing unfortunate about Bitflip HD is its annoying tendency to randomly crash or simply never complete its loading cycle. If the developers can correct these issues, they will have created one of the better puzzle games on the iPad.
Given their ubiquity, there seems little need to review the basic mechanics of a match three game. However, Bitflip HD mixes this up a bit by incorporating several new mechanics. The first is the "poptab," an on-screen device that looks like, well, a pull tab from a Diet Coke. The Poptab has two two holes and can be moved to any position on the board and to any horizontal or vertical orientation. This mechanic subverts the typical match three device of "click two items to watch them switch places." Here, the Poptab must be used to switch items on the grid, so two items are changed simultaneously, plus it can be flipped over, which also changes gameplay substantially. Each piece in Bitflip HD has two sides and a different color and/or pattern on each side. Both colors and patterns must match before they can be cleared from the board. It's nothing truly revolutionary, but it's enough of a variation to make Bitflip HD more interesting than the typical match three.
There are a variety of game variants included with Bitflip HD including "Pop," where points are awarded based on the number of matches made in a pre-set time, and "Drop," where disks continue to fall on top of other disks while you clear the screen - sort of Tetris meets Bejeweled. There are also a number of themes ready to go in the game, so you don't have to settle for the initial basic look.
Taken as a whole, Bitflip HD is a solid puzzler that only suffers due to some annoying and random crashing issues. If the developer can fix these issues, it will be easy to recommend Bitflip HD to anyone who loves a good puzzle game.