Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4S
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The Tower of Zarbartz is a puzzle game based on fluid dynamics in which players place blocks to direct the flows of different types of fluids in order to get them into the correct receptacles. Like many physics based games with fluid dynamics, this game uses a point of origin from which liquids issue. Once it's out, the liquid then sloshes around the environment in a realistic way and the player must then adjust the environment to move the liquid in the right direction. In this game, players use their fingers to draw groups of small blocks on the screen which they turn on and off to control the flow of the liquids. The mechanic is a bit crude, but effective all the same.
Placing blocks isn't always easy. The blocks are tiny and they are placed by tracing a finger anywhere on the screen. Blocks can either be placed or removed from the screen by tracing over them and touching a button the turns them "on" or "off". The small blocks afford players a very fine control over their placement, but it also means that players will have to place lots of blocks when large walls or troughs are needed. Luckily, the trace to place mechanic works well to get blocks on the screen quickly in large groups.
What sets The Tower of Zarbartz apart from other fluid funneling games is its use of different liquids that interact differently with each other and the environment. Sometimes one liquid will float on top of another, heavier liquid much like oil sits on water. Other liquids will mix together making them difficult to separate. These fluid interactions bring another dimension to this game's puzzles and keep players on their toes.
Some really fun puzzles and spot on fluid physics make this game super entertaining. Some less than perfect English translations also bring a bit of unintended humor to the game. There are tons of levels and lots of different ways to solve each puzzle and get higher scores so players will get lots of enjoyment for their money. While it has its quirks, The Tower of Zarbartz is genuinely very good at what it does.