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Friday, November 17, 2017

3 things

Hey! My niece won an Esports Award: https://go.twitch.tv/videos/201043149



Interesting talk about the dangers of technology addiction: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=975&v=3ev7GXzFTPg 



Brian Pletcher's blog about mechanical puzzles is always insightful about new puzzles: http://mechanical-puzzles.blogspot.com/


Thursday, November 16, 2017

WordBubbles! by Apprope FREE

iPhone Screenshot 2  iPhone Screenshot 3

WordBubbles! comes from Apprope and is very popular. The object is to find words, use up all the letters and then move on.  The concept borrows from Boggle. (I once heard a story about 2 sisters who, whenever they get together, have a marathon Boggle competition.)

WordBubbles! has a lot going for it. Unfortunately, they have a lot of ads.

Very Interesting: I was stuck on a 6 letter word. I showed it to 4 others. They couldn't get it.  The next day, that puzzle was replaced with another.  It appears that Apprope wants to keep me going at all costs, hoping that I'll maybe buy some hints.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wordbubbles/id922488002?mt=8

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Ten monkey challenge by Miroslaw Zielinski

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 3
Ten monkey challenge comes from Miroslaw Zielinski. He's been publishing a lot of puzzle app the past couple of years.  See list below.

The object in today's game is to score point by placing tiles from the bottom to the grid and make 10 either horizontally or vertically.  At the beginning, all tiles are simply 1x1 and it's easy.  Very rapidly, the tiles become 2x1 and 2x2 (minus 1 square).

A flaw in this game is when a 2x2 (minus 1 square) pops up with two 6's and a 5. No matter how perfectly you have played the game, that tile signals the end is very imminent.

At the moment, there are just 11 players on the Leaderboard.  My score is 295, which I think is pretty good. But somebody has over 500, which I think is exceptional.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ten-monkey-challenge/id1303911111?mt=8
http://www.twohandslab.com/


Other games from Miroslaw Zielinski
Tower Locked
Circles Galaxy
Tomb of the Brain
Color Square Puzzle Game

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

La Palette Color Ballz by Nadezhda Sidorova

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 5

La Palette Color Ballz comes from Nadezhda Sidorova. (I've always liked the name Nadezhda.) It's a 'match-3' game.  There are hundreds of match-3 games.  The most famous: Bejeweled and Candy Crush.

I normally ignore match-3 games. But I decided to download this only because I love the icon.
Cover art

The actual game itself is pretty good. First of all: colors mix. Second: the whites never match-up.
There are other elements, borrowed from Candy Crush, but that's okay.

La Palette Color Ballz has a lot of charm.  There are 61 levels and at the end of each, you are rewarded with a quote. For example: don't blame the rain, it can't fall up.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/la-palette-color-ballz/id1292038750?mt=8
https://lapalette-game.com/
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sidorova.lapalette&hl=en&pcampaignid=MKT-Other-global-all-co-prtnr-py-PartBadge-Mar2515-1

Friday, November 10, 2017

Campfire Cooking by Layton Hawkes $3.99

iPhone Screenshot 1
2017 has been somewhat disappointing in terms of puzzle app games.  There seems to have been a drop off in the number of innovative & high quality games. In short, I've been a little bummed.
iPhone Screenshot 2
Campfire Cooking from Layton Hawkes has lifted my spirits mightily.
iPhone Screenshot 3
The object is to toast your marshmallows evenly on both sides.  Your fork can slide forward and back. It can also roll the marshmallows when rolling side to side.
iPhone Screenshot 4
Very Interesting:
1. The wooden forks can rotate 90 degrees.
2. The metal forks cannot rotate.
3. The tin cans must rest on the fire at the end.
4. The magnets can pull the tin cans.
5. Sometimes you have to light the campfires.
iPhone Screenshot 5
Campfire Cooking tends to fall in the sokoban category of puzzles. But not exactly.

The graphics are so charming. I love the fact that there's no move-counter that awards any stars.

The puzzles are challenging at a perfect level. I cruised through the first 50 levels in about 90 minutes. Then my battery died out! And I had to go to sleep.   I've done about 25 more levels. I'm saving the rest for a rainy day.

This game is a gem.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/campfire-cooking/id1226277306?mt=8

Layton made Puzzlepops last year, which I really liked. But not as much as Campfire Cooking.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

New web page to explore new puzzles

My old friend Rod Kimball has a new web page: https://www.enigami.fun/

Rod is definitely one of the coolest people I know. Check out this photo of him: he's the one on the extreme right.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Joints Puzzle Game by EggShellGames FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
Joints Puzzle Game comes from EggShellGames.  It's a lot like Lights Out.  The object is to get all the nodes green.  Tap on any node and it will change. It's neighbors will also change color.
iPhone Screenshot 4  iPhone Screenshot 5
The graphics are very good.
These are hard!  Of the 144 levels, I've done about 25.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/joints-puzzle-game/id1296723568?mt=8

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Nodulus by Dan Kondratyuk FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1
Have you ever played ThinkFun's River Crossing Puzzles? It started a new genre of puzzles known as Plank Puzzles. The object is to pick up logs and use them over the stumps to create a new path to the other side of the river.  Read more here.
iPhone Screenshot 2
Dan Kondratyuk's Nodulus is essentially the same thing, but with cool graphics.
iPhone Screenshot 3
There are 20 levels and they get pretty tough.  I solved the first 13 levels. More levels are coming as other players create their own.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/nodulus/id1294238868?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.hyperparticle.nodulus&pcampaignid=MKT-Other-global-all-co-prtnr-py-PartBadge-Mar2515-1

hyperparticle.com

Spin Mix is an old game from 2012 that's related. It's no longer available, which means that you should download good games when I tell you to.
How it's different:
1. The object is to get the specific plank to the double circle target.
2. All planks can be swiveled at any time.

Monday, November 6, 2017

it's red by Jakub Szolomicki FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
it's red comes from Jakub Szolomicki.  His description:
Try your best in the hardest game ever released.
Solve 45 unique riddles and prove your genius.
Download for free for mobile devices.

It's a logic puzzle game filled with 45 unique, mind-blowing, extremely hard riddles. If you like puzzle games, IQ tests and stuff like that, red is for you.

iPhone Screenshot 3  iPhone Screenshot 5
The objective is to get the whole screen to be red.  There are 45 levels and each one has a unique solution.

My thoughts
1. It's not the hardest game ever released.
2. Bart Bonte's Yellow (Game) came out in May of this year.  it's red borrows the idea but seems to have unique puzzles. Bart's game is more polished.
3. Hints are available for each level and the price is to watch an ad.
4. I've solved a few levels without really understanding what I did.

I'm stuck on level 26. I've tried to access the hints, but that's not working for me.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/its-red/id1303242644?mt=8

Friday, November 3, 2017

The Gold Coin Puzzle

My grandfather's hobby was collecting clocks and repairing them.  He was completely self taught. Other clock repairmen would bring their problems to him.

Many years ago, he bought this Gold Coin puzzle which is now a treasured family heirloom.  Recently I saw it for the first time in at least 20 years.  I made this little video. The objective: What time is it?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=QB7wAKacsSA



Cedric Grolet was recently awarded the honor of being the best pastry baker in the world. Check out his Rubik's Cube cakes. Scroll down a bit.
https://www.instagram.com/cedricgrolet/?hl=en

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Typeshift by Zach Gage FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 4
Typeshift is a word puzze from Zach Gage.  The idea is to slide each column up and down and utilize every single letter.  It's been a while since I played a word puzzle. This game is okay.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/typeshift/id1084762137?mt=8

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Octopuz by gary gogis FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
Octopuz come from Gary Gogis. It's a game that tests your memory & your quickness.
iPhone Screenshot 3  iPhone Screenshot 4
The object is to memorize the image, then rebuild it with the correct blocks.

This is one of hundreds of games that promote brain training.  This game is okay for a spell.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/octopuz/id1135510959?mt=8

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Cube Escape: Theater by Rusty Lake B.V. FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1
It's been a while since I played a Rusty Lake game. I've been saving Cube Escape: Theater for a miserable rainy day. Sunday was it.
iPhone Screenshot 2
The premise: you are in a bar/cabaret room with a bartender, another patron, and various performers behind the curtain.
iPhone Screenshot 3
All Rusty Lake games have a certain creepy theme that implies a past murder with some kind of present ghoul.
iPhone Screenshot 4
I'm not a huge fan of Room Escapes: there are too many of them and the whole concept of finding clues to mysterious locking mechanisms - they all come from that CD-ROM dinosaur game Myst. The novelty wears off after a while.
iPhone Screenshot 5
Cube Escape: Theater is solid, but not great.

My qualms:
1. Using a Rush Hour puzzle.
2. A very cool element from the game Arles was used in Theater. It was great the first time.

This game plays quickly. About 90 minutes.

(It's okay to consult a walkthrough! For example: if a key piece is obscured in a tree, do you really need to wander the entire island, tapping on every object?)

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cube-escape-theatre/id1092261317?mt=8

Other Rusty Lake Games I've played/reviewed:

Cube Escape: Birthday
Cube Escape: Case 23
Cube Escape: The Mill
Cube Escape: Harvey's Room
Cube Escape: The Lake
Cube Escape: Arles
Cube Escape: Seasons

Announcement: this week is International Games Week. http://games.ala.org/international-games-week/

Monday, October 30, 2017

Boo! (factory balls halloween) by Bart Bonte FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1
Loyal Blog Followers know how much I liked Bart Bonte's Factory Balls.   Boo! is Bart's latest and it's a stencil puzzle, just like Factory Balls.
iPhone Screenshot 2
There are only 16 levels. They get pretty hard. But, I've done them all. 

Get in the spirit of the holiday and play this.

https://itunes.apple.com/app/boo-factory-balls-halloween/id1299443361
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=air.com.bartbonte.boo

Friday, October 27, 2017

Cubesc by Cagri Gecin $.99

iPhone Screenshot 1 iPhone Screenshot 2
Cubesc comes from Cagri Gecin. It's been on my mind for a few weeks. That first image! It's haunting. Look at the Teddy Bear!
iPhone Screenshot 3 iPhone Screenshot 5
The object is to get Your Man/Men to traverse over all the squares and end up on the final square.

We've seen this genre numerous times.

Features:
1. Wormholes
2. Bridges have to be formed
3. Some squares need to be crossed twice.
4. 2 characters have to solve their respective fields at the same time. This is when things get most interesting.

There are approximately 70 levels and I've done about 25.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cubesc/id1257397785?mt=8
http://redelsoft.net/

Thursday, October 26, 2017

CraCol by Nguyen Truong FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
CraCol comes from Nguyen Truong. The object is to score points by creating rows, columns & diagonals of the same color.

There have been some other games very similar. This starts very easy with just a few colors. As more are added, things get harder.

I like the graphics. I also like that some of the pieces are doubled.

Once was enough though. My score was 281.


https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cracol/id1296554736?ls=1&mt=8

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Number Array by an zhuona FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
Number Array comes from an zhuona.

His description: The goal of number array is to arrange the numbers into four rows ordered from top to bottom, 1 through maximum, each row having a different color.
At the beginning of game, you have 4 blank spaces to place the numbers. A blank space can be filled by the next value of the same color as the number to its top. For example, the 4 of red can be placed in a blank space to the right of the 3 of red. No numbers can be placed to the right of a maximum. If there are multiple blanks to the right of a maximum, none can be used without moving the maximum.

My thoughts: this is an interesting game that involves interesting strategy.  Multiple times I ran into trouble and had to restart.

My only complaint is that the shades of blue are a touch too similar.

3 questions:
1. How are these puzzles generated?
2. Are there multiple solution paths?
3. Is every situation possible to solve?

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/number-array/id1281540869?mt=8
https://azhuona.tumblr.com/post/165259999821/number-array

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Divisor by G vector FREE

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2

Divisor by G vector is a reverse-point scoring puzzle game. The object is to place the numbered tiles at the bottom onto the grid so that 2 or more adjacent tiles will a factor of each other. The game ends when there are no more tiles. Doing this with the least # of moves is the objective.

Look at image #1.  Place the 9 at the top right corner. See the two 18's? They will turn into 2's. Then both 2's will divide into the 42, making it 21. Chain reactions like that are key.

At first I didn't like this game, but I do now.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/divisor/id1295655498?mt=8

Late Announcement: there's an annual Celebration of Mind dinner to honor Martin Gardner. Various people are hosting dinners around the country/world. It was this past Sunday. Sorry for forgetting to post this.

If there's not a dinner where you live, you can plan to host one.
http://www.celebrationofmind.org/ 

Friday, October 20, 2017

Cubiques 2 by Dilmer Valecillos $.99

iPhone Screenshot 1  iPhone Screenshot 2
Not long ago I reviewed Dilmer Valecillos's game CubiquesCubiques 2 is even better.  The object is to get Your Men - the white cubes - to roll over to their target squares.
iPhone Screenshot 4  iPhone Screenshot 5
There's a lot to like about this game. For example, the gray squares can only be rolled over once. This is sometimes advantageous and disadvantageous.

The cubes are sometimes on the same grid, but often are offset.

The graphics are mostly good. But my criticism of Cubiques holds true for Cubiques 2. Namely: I want more color variety and I want the ability to rotate the whole grid so I can more easily see the rectangular holes within the grid.

There are 70 levels and I've done about 60.  According to the Leader Board, not many people have tried this game. That's a pity.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cubiques-2/id1256691607?mt=8

Announcement: -Pila- is temporarily free.