148Apps Network Post
Developer: Stolen Couch Games
Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.3
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2, iPod touch 4

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Ichi is a game that wasn’t made initially for touch screens, but was destined for them. Named after the Japanese word for the number 1, this is a game where single taps and holds on the screen must be used. There are balls that travel around the screen that must bounce around off of walls and triangle objects that are littered throughout the levels. The triangles can be interacted with by a tap on the screen. Also, the ball can create a temporary wall on the path it travels by holding down on the screen. Levels start out simple, but start to add new elements, new things that can be done by tapping, like rotating the triangles or toggling whether objects can pass through them or not. The goal is ultimately to collect all the circular objects in the level in as few taps as possible.

Ichi thankfully goes on an A, B, and C grading scale. Yes, the game is like a tenured professor who quit trying years ago. The game explicitly says how many taps are left before the grade gets lowered, which is extremely helpful. The puzzles are well-designed, and while there are some extremely challenging ones, the solutions always seem to make sense. The pencil aesthetic works well for the game, and little touches like the smudges where objects are rotating around goes a long way to make the game feel like it’s being played on paper. Don’t like the game’s built-in levels, or have an idea for a new kind of genius level? Then use the game’s level creation and sharing tools to play more levels, and make custom levels. The editor is simple to use as well.

Early adopters should note that as of when this review was written, the level sharing mode was causing the game to crash, though it worked when tested earlier. There was a server crash at launch with the level creation mode, but it is fixed and working properly now. I think the line that is used to indicate the path the ball will be traveling once the level starts is somewhat confusing; it seems like it’s a trail coming out from behind the ball, so it can be initially confusing, though it should be made apparent after a few play sessions.

For those looking for a fun puzzle game that requires some reaction time along with brain work, Ichi is a great fit, as it makes great use of its concept.

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