App Reviewed on: iPhone XR
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King's Path Solitaire uses traditional playing cards and you play it by yourself, but calling it a Solitaire variant is a bit of a misnomer. This game is faster and challenges players to bend their brains to weave through grids of face-up cards in ways that may initially seem unintuitive. Once things click into place, though, blazing through challenges is a blast that feels perfect for anyone looking for a quick burst of puzzle-based gameplay.
Make way for the king!
Every game of King's Path Solitaire is a sort of maze that always starts with the King card. Your goal is to draw or tap a path from the King through adjacent cards to eventually use every card on the grid exactly once. There are rules that prevent you from simply tapping any old card in any order you want, though.
The rules that govern which cards you can tap are somewhat akin to Solitaire's card stacking rules. You can draw a path to any card of lesser value, but you can also tap paths through cards regardless of value if they match in suit or value of the card you are currently using. For example, you can highlight a 2 of hearts and still have the ability to progress in the puzzle if there are 2's of a different suit or any heart cards immediately surrounding it.
Choose your path
King's Path Solitaire takes this ruleset and places it within a small handful of modes. The adventure mode boasts nearly 200 premade levels using a subset of cards to make your way through, and the daily challenge is a similar variant where you can compare your completion time against other players on randomly generated puzzles each day.
Similarly, the game's free play mode also has a daily variant, but challenges players to draw paths using the four kings of a full deck of cards to carve paths that cover as many of the 44 remaining cards (there are no aces in this game). No matter which mode you're playing, every puzzle is completely solvable, though free play does allow players to submit their best effort at completion even if they don't cover every card on the board.
The first few puzzles of King's Path Solitaire might trip you up as you still try to internalize its rules, but once you get the hang of it you can blast through levels in seconds. There's something really satisfying about these mini-challenges, most likely because the game is so plainly legible that you can appreciate the way a board layout operates even if you spend only 20 seconds with it.
King's Path Solitaire is a free game, but you can opt to pay $2.99 to remove ads, unlock all of the adventure mode, and gain access to the free play mode. I kind of wish this purchase also came with some additional options for adjusting the game's color scheme or card designs to add some visual variety to the experience, but even without those options the purchase is worth it just to be able to cruise through puzzles uninterrupted.
The bottom line
King's Path Solitaire excels in its ability to make even its most complicated puzzles digestable and satisfying. It's absolutely worth adding to your puzzle game library.