Wednesday, August 31, 2011

AAQR: Gem Spinner (game)

NOTE: This game was given away on Amazon Free App of the Day (not any more)

Gem Spinner is a genre masher, combining Bejeweled and Tetris.

The field is full of different "pieces" each containing several colored gems. You need to make 3 consecutive gems (horizontal or vertical only) of same color. The catch is, you can only move gems INSIDE the piece. You cannot shift a gem across two different pieces. If you remove gems, that square turns "dark" and gems are removed, and more gems drop from above to "fill" the pieces. If you don't see obvious possibilities, you can "rotate" pieces (double tap the piece) 180 degrees and see if that gives you more ideas. If you turn ALL squares of the piece dark, that piece is removed from the board. The idea is to remove as many pieces as possible before the time limit expire. You can actually MOVE the pieces around when you have removed a few pieces already and have some room to maneuver.

Too complicated? Yes. It's hard to keep track of all this stuff in your head. Not a bad idea, but a bit too complicated for action puzzler.

(Link to be added later)

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

AAQR: ZDefense, a tower defense game

Zdefense was given away a few days back on Amazon, and it's basically HexDefense with an editor thrown in, and difficulty turned WAY up, and a few twists.

The actual combat is standard fare... "creeps" emerge from entrance hex, and goes for the exit hex, via whatever efficient way they see. Your job is to kill them and prevent them from getting through, using whatever turrets available. Turret choices are your standard list: cannon, laser, missile, shockwave, slow. Each can be upgraded umpteenth times. Kill creeps to get money for upgrades.

This game throws in a few more twists

Mountains: a tower on a mountain hex have vastly improved range

No-build hexes: you can't build on those, but creeps and move on them

Warp-gates: creeps enter a warp gate will instantly emerge from the matching warp gate at a different sector of the map

Tunnels: creeps that enter the tunnel will stay inside and move until it gets to tunnel exit (and can be shot at in the meanwhile)

And as said, it even has a map editor, and ability to take screenshots to celebrate your winning moment (and share them with friends). The maps can then be shared as well.

It also features 3 levels of difficulty, and even on easy, some of these maps are quite hard.

At $1.99 regular price, this is not a bad way to spend it, albeit a bit derivative.