Developer: Puck Loves Games
Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
Device Reviewed on: iPhone, iPad

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

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

Rogue bricks have launched an attack on the moon. The sun must avenge this travesty and destroy the invaders. Touch and drag to set the sun’s trajectory through space, then send it careening through the universe to carom off of moon chunks and bricks, destroying everything in its path.

photo 3Assess the bouncing-ball physics of each puzzle before releasing the sun, since there is only one sun per level. Fail, and the level must be replayed. Note – expect failure. Players shouldn’t let the simplicity of Naughty Brick‘s premise deceive them – its levels are increasingly difficult to navigate, requiring a trial-and-error approach and some sharp puzzle-solving skills. It’s definitely humbling when a savvy ten year-old manipulates a portal to solve a level his thirty-something year-old mother couldn’t decipher after an unmentionable number of attempts.

For those who might find themselves in the same situation as above, see the rewind button at the bottom right of the screen (only in the 4th episode, however). It functions as a sort of “cheat,” as one can rewind the sun in order to reconfigure the scene to their advantage.

Progression through the 70 levels brings new and challenging features. For example, force fields, portals, black holes, electrical currents, and moving walls of gravity. Certain levels allow players to slide, reorient, or otherwise manipulate these items in order to help propel the sun along its brick-busting course.

photo 2If players find themselves unsatisfactorily stuck on a level early on, there are hints available. Or they can take advantage of the skip function when its offered. If all else fails, they can also go to settings and unlock all levels. The game will warn them that the action will “wipe out” their “sense of accomplishment.” I agree that successfully completing a tough level can definitely stroke one’s nerd ego. However, getting stuck is no fun, and exploring all levels is definitely entertaining.

Speaking of entertaining, the bricks are quite a bonus in themselves. They give snarky comments in their squeaky little voices, such as, “Why don’t you find someone who knows how to play the game?” or, “You’re not really the brightest star in the sky, are you?” Touch them, and they will even get a little saucy – “I’m not that kind of brick.” They enhance the flavor of the game. So do the “Sun Fact, Fun Fact” quotes or scientific tidbits shared after each level.

As of now, there are no social aspects to the game. No Twitter or Facebook bragging rights. There are also no in-app purchases. Just a what-we-see-is-what-we-get game. Simple, yet fun. Overall, Naughty Bricks is engaging to play. It’s cute. It’s funny. It’s thought-provoking. For a first game product, it’s a winner.

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