App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
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Happy is the childhood that contains the words "You sunk my Battleship." The classic board game successfully combines strategy and simple guessing, making for an experience that's easy to play and love.
Warship Solitaire from Nexx Studio is partially inspired by Hasbro's world-famous game of plastic ships and pegs, but playing it is a bit more complicated than calling out numbers. That's a good thing. In fact, Warship Solitaire is a natural progression for anyone that grew up loving the thrill of seeking out and destroying their friends' fleets.
Warship Solitaire is one part Battleship and one part Sudoku. Each level takes place on a seven-by-seven grid that's blank, save for at least one hint to the partial location of a ship. You must uncover one battleship (three squares), two destroyers (two squares each), and three submarines (one square each).
As in Sudoku, each row and column of a stage in Warship Solitaire is marked with numbers. Those numbers indicate how many ships (or ship pieces) are in that row or column. You can be assured that ships will never have other ships adjacent to them, even diagonally.
That's all the knowledge you're supplied. The rest is up to you.
One thing that may throw you for a loop about Warship Solitaire is that the game never indicates when you've made a wrong move. Frankly, you can put ships wherever you want, but if the final result doesn't match up to the game's conditions, you won't finish the level. It's very much like playing Sudoku on paper. You're responsible for every mistake, and guessing won't get you anywhere.
At best, you're supplied with hints (which recharge over time – hooray!), but even that's tricky mercy because the reveal is random, and may fill in a square you've already filled yourself.
Warship Solitaire is a bare-bones, sit-down-and-think-about-it sort of strategy game. The graphics are primitive, and every move you make feels like you're being watched by a judging relative that never speaks – just grins and shakes their head.
But struggling to uncover that last square makes victory all the more sweet. Warship Solitaire's lack of frills has a way of clearing your mind and encouraging you to persist.