Posts Tagged physics puzzler
Okay, I’m obviously kidding but the inclusion of Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum wouldn’t be all that out of place in Escape to Earth. Someone’s been captured by aliens, then somehow miraculously manages to escape their captors and hijack a ship. The only problem is they have to get out of the mothership before they can taste real freedom. Or smoke those cigars. Last Independence Day reference, I promise.
So players will find themselves in control of yet another space-faring vessel, however things aren’t as derivative as they might initially seem. It’s true that they’ll have to blast away at many an aggressive extra-terrestrial along the way, but Escape to Earth is about more than just blowing stuff up. In addition to the other-worldly armaments (i.e. a laser and missiles), players also have access to a tractor beam and “repulser” which are needed to solve a number of physics-based environmental puzzles. So if they ever want to see Earth again, they’ll have to use both their brain and their trigger fingers.
Those interested in fighting (and puzzling) their way through this interstellar labyrinth can do so right now. Escape to Earth is already on the App Store, and it can be had for the low/standard price of one dollar.
Remember Sprinkle? That super-awesome water physics puzzle game about aliens defending their homes from meteoric garbage? Well it’s just been topped-off with more content.
Mediocre Games has just released an update with 14 new levels. That’s probably about 3 lifetimes worth of gameplay, assuming one plans to aim for the maximum rating in each one. Seriously, getting the highest rating for the later stages in this game is hard.
But the real reason I wanted to talk about this has to do with Sprinkle‘s “controversial” in-app purchase option to unlock later worlds. Essentially it wasn’t necessary, as metalcasket mentioned in our review‘s comments. The feature has since been removed, but Mediocre has been gracious enough to offer up 6 new levels (in addition to the previously mentioned 14) to these early in-app purchasers. How cool is that?
Sprinkle is still just $0.99, and now features 36 levels (42 for the in-app folks). And there’s no time like the present to strap on that adorable little extra terrestrial firefighter’s helmet.
First up was Super Crossfire, originally an Xbox Live Indie and PC game that’s now making its way to the iPhone and iPad. It’s a space shooter with a very retro style appearance and one very neat trick up its sleeve. The player can warp their ship from one side of the screen to the other, effectively flicking the action upside down and round again.
Having played it, it adds a great tactical element to things as besides just shooting at everything that moves, it’s important to remember to flip round to avoid being shot at. It’s clearly going to take a bit of practice to master but I think arcade shooter fans are going to lap this up as it offers a great, unique element to the genre. Hopefully other players will find themselves not quite as shockingly bad at it as I was!
Developers Radian Games state that there’ll be over 150 different enemy waves across five different chapters with a plentiful supply of upgrades to keep things interesting. In the final build, there’ll be three different control methods with virtual buttons, slide and tilt based controls to hopefully keep every gamer happy.
Super Crossfire is set for release this coming Thursday, October 13th and will be priced at $0.99 for the iPhone version and $2.99 for the HD iPad edition.
Following a more familiar line of gaming for Chillingo is Little Lost Chick. It’s an amalgamation of a number of different types of casual games. There’s Cut the Rope style elements with the need to cut rope that keeps the chick from his goal. It’s not just cutting and swinging though with bounce pads and blocks also helping along the way and adding an ever enjoyable original touch to the action.
I only played a few levels of Little Lost Chick but what I saw was enjoyable. While players can choose to just get to the end of the level, there’s also the prospect of collecting up three eggs scattered around each level and adding some longevity to the game. Each brief stage was consistently interesting, throwing different obstacles at poor Bruce the chick. It made for a puzzle adventure type experience than just the usual physics puzzle challenge. The full version promises 100 levels in all which should ensure an enjoyable time for puzzle fans.
Little Lost Chick is set to launch this month for all iOS devices.
Last but most definitely not least was Hank Hazard, my personal favorite of the three. Hank Hazard is the name of an adorable stunt hamster. Players must guide Hank around numerous levels whilst collecting stars and secret coins. Gameplay is a little similar to Little Lost Chick but considerable charm oozes from the title. Again, there are 100 levels on offer, each combining a mixture of physics based puzzling, fast reactions and a hint of racing.
As the screenshots below show, Hank is a daring hamster, not just falling through each stage but by flying across the air thanks to boxing gloves and bouncey pads. As a stunt hamster, fire and other obstacles like bombs must be avoided. It’s a simple concept but one that I think will be quite a hit if the preview I had is anything to go by.
Hank Hazard will be released for all iOS devices in November.
We’ll be sure to keep track of each game’s development.
When a pair of cats gets split up into pet carriers after their family begins the arduous task of moving to a new home, they’re understandably pretty bummed. Being torn away from a loved one like that is certainly no picnic, which is why it’s up to iOS users to set things right. Not in a conventional, “let the kitties out of their cages” kind of way, but in a more game-like fashion. Oh yeah, I’m talking physics puzzles.
Crazy Cats Love, by WolfGames, is a slightly less common kind of gravity game. Rather than clearing a screen, launching objects or swinging stuff, players have to strategically remove blocks in order to get the two to meet up. This includes, but is not limited to, creating ramps, timed displacement of moving platforms, using stationary gadgets such as fans and even flipping switches.
The game is split up into six areas, each one representing a leg of the family’s journey to their new home, and includes bonus levels to keep players interested. Just in case the plight of two love-struck animals wasn’t enough of an incentive to keep playing. Those interested in helping the hapless fuzzies out can download the game from the App Store right now for $0.99. Or they can try out the free Lite version, user’s choice.
JellyCar surprised a lot of folks with its sudden appearance and bouncy automotive hijinks. So much so that it spawned two well-received sequels. Now JellyCar 3, the most recent of the bunch, has a free trial. Just in case the dollar seems a bit too steep.
Now the incredibly frugal, or those without access to electronic funds (i.e. young-uns) can sample 10 of JellyCar 3‘s levels for free. That’s 10 levels of “squishy goodness” for the same price as lunch when someone else is paying. Of course, if a player were to find the size-adjusting, wiggly, loopy, special ability-having, secret exit filled, car-customizing extravaganza to be irresistible, it’s not exactly super-expensive.
So why not give JellyCar 3 Lite a try since it’s free? It’s not going to cost anything but a bit of time, and chances are it’ll be considered time well spent. I mean, the original was a lot of fun, right?
With a seemingly neverending stream of physics based puzzlers that offer cute characters, it’d be easy to be rather cynical about each new release of a title in this genre. Fortunately, we try our best here to pick out the cream of the crop and I’ve got a hopeful feeling that Happy Hills will be one such title.
Set for release September 15th, players must remove blocks from the Happy Hills’ heads by placing bombs. One mode is offered at first with players given a limited number of bombs to achieve this goal but future modes are set to be added in later updates. The tradition of earning stars according to success is here with 48 levels in all to unlock as time goes by. Variety should be easy too with each block type having its own personality and weaknesses along with special levels featuring boss blocks as well.
Plenty of updates are already planned with the game initially available for free with a further 47 levels all desert themed purchasable for $0.99. Extra level packs are set to be released in October and November too to keep things enticing.
We’ll be keeping an eye on Happy Hills come release day. For now, check out the gameplay trailer below, which – graphically, at least – smacks decidedly of a certain Nintendo-themed platformer we all knw and love.
Sprinkle makes fighting fire with physics (and water, of course) a heck of a lot of fun.
Read The Full Review »
And it’s a great little puzzler. Take the contraption building of a physics puzzler like The Incredible Machine and make it quick and casual like Cut The Rope. Once you are done, filter all that all through the mind of an 8 year old and you get the idea of what Casey’s Contraptions is bringing.
We can expect to see Casey’s Contraptions to hit the App Store soon. I know I can’t wait!
One of the greatest aspects of game design is the ability to borrow great design elements from proven games and make something entirely new. Endloop Studios is doing exactly that with their latest game, Chicken Balls. In Chicken Balls you play as a veteran war bird named Crash who has to defend his farm from an all out alien assault. In the process of freeing his animal friends from the clutches of the enemy, Crash realizes that the aliens have a more sinister plan than just animal captivity.
The gameplay trailer reveals that the game uses an Angry Birds launching mechanic, but it also includes innovative elements from such classics as Peggle, Pinball, and Pachinko. Lovers of quirky physics based puzzle games should be in for a treat. Chicken Balls certainly appears to have what it takes to be a great success in the app store, and we’ll all find out soon enough because the game is slated to release on March 15th.