Price: Free ($2.99 to unlock full game)
Version Reviewed: 1.0.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
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Game Controls Rating:
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GridBlock is a puzzle game for those who like some danger with their thinking. The goal is somewhat simple: fill all the squares on the screen with cubes of the same color. Some cubes can flip around to different colors, and some are wild cards. Of course, there are other explosive cubes, chameleon blocks, and various other objects through the game's 80+ levels that can both help and hinder on the way to the goal.
While GridBlock looks like a more traditional puzzle game, there's far more action going on here than one might expect. There's precision tilting of blocks that needs to be done. There are platform timing elements. Explosions! There is the need to form a plan of attack in the levels, but actual execution of them is important as well. It's more engaging than many traditional puzzle games.
The game is true freemium, with 2 sets of levels available for free, and another 7 available for $2.99. The game gives away a good amount for free, with the second set of levels especially puzzling the player. Or at least frustrating them. Still, it's a great taste for what the full game will offer: more challenge and more puzzles. The freemium model hasn't worked well, so it'll be interesting to see how many people take advantage of what this game offers.
The tilt controls are somewhat frustrating to deal with because of the fact that there's no sensitivity or any way to adjust them, period. So, this is a game that needs to be played with the device in a proper position, as opposed to being able to really relax with it. Even just having accelerometer calibration would help out significantly. Visually, the game feels a bit boring and unclean because of the sparse black play areas and basic colors in use. Someone truly design-conscious could make this game look fantastic.
GridBlock is definitely worth the free taste for anyone who likes puzzle games to see if the concept and controls will stick. While the latter aspect is frustrating, GridBlock does a great job at executing its premise.