Developer: Dyerware
Price: Free
Version Reviewed: 1.1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4S

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

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

For generations, chalk doodles have been the gateway to many great games. Whether it’s hopscotch, four square, or just drawing stuff on the street, many of us associate the unique look of chalk scribbles with fun, play, and childhood innocence. Doodle Dice leverages that look for fun and play while adding something a little more adult: gambling.

Doodle Dice is actually a collection of three different dice games all tied together by similar mechanics and the same chalk aesthetic. However, two of the games, Poker Dice and Yatzy, are locked behind a paywall leaving Farkle as the only option for first time players. Farkle is a dice-based gambling game, like craps, but the goal is simply to score the most points, not rake in the most cash. Players, or computers, take turns rolling dice and, depending on the outcome, arranging them into certain formations for certain scores. Ones and fives are always worth something, but big scores come from stuff like flushes and straights. Even bigger scores come from rolling again after the dice have been docked in the hopes of chaining together an even bigger combo. However, if that last roll is bad then no points are earned at all. It’s the kind of enjoyable, risk/reward tension that defines all great games based mostly on luck but ever so slightly on skill. Besides, rounds move so fast that players never have time to worry about past mistakes when a new chance for success is just seconds away.

However, despite its addictive gameplay, wonderful hand-scrawled chalk visuals, and peppy club soundtrack, Doodle Dice is ultimately a very simple, fleeting game. Granted, most gambling games are but they make up for that simplicity with the opportunity to win real money. With Doodle Dice, though, the only enjoyment comes from just replaying the game and that can only go so far.

Doodle Dice is a fun, little game that mostly works because it’s free. Besides, if money really matters that much, players themselves can just start betting.


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