The iTunes store is littered with puzzle games of various quality and Sticky Blocks certainly continues the trend with a massive selection of levels that will keep any gamer entertained for many hours.
Sticky Blocks is a universal app that works on the iPhone, iPod Touch and even the iPad – allowing your single purchase to spread across many of your Apple devices. Even better with Dropbox support, you can transfer your progress from one device to another.
The aim is to move around blocks of various shapes and sizes around the screen until one in particular can reach the designated goal. Unfortunately for you, the blocks are there to hinder your progress and by carefully and cleverly shifting them out of the way – your success can finally be measured by the number of moves taken.
You may be thinking there are many games that emulate this type of gameplay experience and of course you would be right, however Sticky Blocks takes the whole concept quite a bit further by adding other features to further expand the original ideas.
Among your block shifting exploits, you will notice hidden items that rest beneath these obstructions. Gems and even animals lurk the levels, boosting your prowess as a puzzle enthusiast and adding an extra twist that encourages exploration. There is even a butterfly that will on occasion enter the screen and with a little patience on your part, lands on one of the blocks and with a swift tap a bonus can be yours if enough are collected.
With 600 levels, Sticky Blocks is absolutely enormous in size and will certainly provide a challenge no matter how persistent you are as a puzzle nut. There is a gentle introduction to the game provided by a very easy ‘difficulty’ setting that ramps up steadily to much larger play areas and more problematic block shapes. To add to the challenge, blocks that are transparent can also join with others to form larger obstacles – so planning is extremely important.
Sticky Blocks claims to have “Beautiful graphics, animations and great voiceovers”. Alas, this is actually the downfall of this otherwise incredibly addictive iOS title. The graphics although serviceable and with various selectable backdrops are far from beautiful. They are in fact above average, with simple animations that do the trick but hardly excel. The lack of visual prowess is further amplified on the iPad with a much larger screen. It’s certainly not terrible, and all the on-screen antics are perfectly functional – however I really feel far more could have been done to add ‘true’ beauty to the title.
The visuals might not excel, however it is the sheer pleasure and ease experienced when moving the blocks around and the addictiveness Sticky Blocks provides that will keep you coming back for more. Game Center support adds extra incentive to continue and in fact replay your previous triumphs.
Sticky Blocks, the universal app for iOS devices isn’t the prettiest of puzzle titles – yet there are plenty of challenges that lay ahead for the gamer who likes to test their wits at a very affordable price of currently 69p.
With a huge selections of 600 levels and various difficulties, adding to that the Game Center support – it’s hard to resist the depth of Sticky Blocks.
UPDATE: 05/12/2011 – Since my review, Sticky Blocks has undergone a graphical update that enhances the quality of the on-screen imagery and animation. The increase is welcome, particularly where the animation is concerned.
A screenshot of the updated imagery is included below: