Developer: Linden Research, Inc
Price: FREE
Version: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPad 3

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★½☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★½

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Kids love to make stuff with blocks. They’re incredibly basic, but they’re also a fantastic and imaginative tool. In many ways BlocksWorld HD is the same thing, only digital. It provides users/players with a fairly simple set of tools and gives them the opportunity to do just about whatever they’d like. As a toybox, it can be really cool to play around in. As a game, not so much.

blocksworld08BlocksWorld really is building blocks given digital form. There are three main shapes available (cube, wedge, cylinder) and a fair number of extra bits like wheels and people, but for the most part diversity is dependent on how each piece is stretched and colored. Blocks link together automatically whenever two flat sides are connected, and adding more shapes, textures, or colors is simply a matter of dragging them out of the toolbar on the right side of the screen. Building isn’t the only option, however. It’s also possible to program basic functions into jets, boosters, wheels, and so on in order to create drivable vehicles or even craft basic games. All of which can be shared directly through the main interface.

It seems a little overwhelming at first, but BlocksWorld‘s interface is actually very easy to learn. In fact, the puzzle-scenarios that are available alongside the main creation mode are a great way to learn the ropes and earn extra blocks (more on that later). Like I’ve said, pieces and textures and such can just be dragged and dropped from the tray on the side. Individual pieces can also be adjusted with simple contextual controls. Even the programming is a cinch to figure out as it relies on incredibly basic commands. With enough time and blocks just about anything can be built.

blocksworld11The problem with having such an open platform is that most of the minor elements don’t feel quite right. Being able to create and operate a car is really cool, but when the car handles very poorly it looses a lot of its luster. It’s also not always possible to connect blocks the way one might want to. As I’ve mentioned they only connect when two flat sides touch; so no making fancy cylindrical joints (i.e. pieces attached on the curved side) or anything like that. The amount of available puzzles, blocks, and textures are also limited. There’s a fair amount to play with initially, but if anyone wants to go crazy with the building they’re going to have to start buying some of the extra content packs.

BlocksWorld HD is a very neat creation tool that offers a remarkable amount of possibilities. But it’s also held back by its incredibly rudimentary game-like features and block/color/texture limits. It’s fun to play with, but not much fun to play.


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