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Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Blockuku by Quan Trong FREE

 Blockuku comes from Quan Trong. The object is to place the shapes into the grid to match the numbers on the horizontal and vertical axes.
There are 78 levels and they go pretty fast. Lots of easy levels.  At the moment, I've done about 65. They're getting tougher now.

What could be better:
1. Graphics: change the color scheme every so often.
2. Each grid is a square. This could sometimes be a rectangle.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/blockuku/id1439010728?mt=8

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Initiative Q: not a puzzle

Puzzlers: this is not a puzzle. But it's a free offer to get free cyber coins in a new currency. I've gone through their webpage. Seems to me that it has a legitimate shot at catching on.  Signing up will gain you instant free coins. When others sign up that you refer, you'll get additional coins.  When all the coins are distributed, then they commence actually using Qs as real money. Pyramid scheme? Not really, because you're not spending money. Waste of time? Yeah, but it takes about 5 minutes to sign up.

Initiative Q is an attempt by ex-PayPal guys to create a new payment system instead of credit cards that were designed in the 1950s. The system uses its own currency, the Q, and to get people to start using the system once it's ready they are allocating Qs for free to people that sign up now (the amount drops as more people join - so better to join early). Signing up is free and they only ask for your name and an email address. There's nothing to lose but if this payment system becomes a world leading payment method your Qs can be worth a lot. If you missed getting bitcoin seven years ago, you wouldn't want to miss this.

Here is my invite link: https://initiativeq.com/invite/HM4ixso3Q

 This link will stop working once I’m out of invites. Let me know after you registered, because I need to verify you on my end.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Falling Moods by Marina Makarevskaya FREE

Marina Makarevskaya recently contacted me about her new puzzle app game Falling Moods. The object is to tap on the emoji faces on top and have them fall through the cracks to the bottom.

Landing on a solid yellow arrow will make that arrow move 1 space. 
The striped arrows vanish after being hit.
The half/half arrows change direction after being hit.

There are 20 levels and I'm stuck on level 11, at the moment.

Interesting game!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/falling-moods/id1436439469?mt=8

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

block dock! by Adem KAYIRCI $.99

block dock! comes from Adem KAYIRCI. It's very similar to Lunar Lockout from ThinkFun.  The object is to slide Your Men until they land on the target squares.
What's different:
1. When you slide one piece into another, the piece that gets bumped will then travel to a wall or another object, like in the game pool.
2. If a piece is already locked in a target square, it cannot get bumped out. But it can be moved out.
3. The Black dots are NOT wormholes. They are black holes.

There are 88 levels.  Normally, I would cruise through these rapidly. However, because of the chain reaction feature, I'm finding these to be quite challenging. Especially, when none of the targets are placed on the perimeter.

Multiple times I made a mistake, but there's no 'undo' button. My mistake! There is an undo button. But it only undoes 1 move only.

At the moment, level 49 is proving to be quite difficult.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/block-dock/id1437139002?mt=8

Adem's other puzzles
turn,
maze cube
cohex
-look-

Similar Games

Slidercrash
Buffalooh
Even Up
Line's Life
Moskeez
Fuzzy Logic
Bumpling
Fling!
Oggoelement
Dots Pairs

Friday, October 26, 2018

ELOH by Broken Rules $2.99

ELOH comes from Christian Baumgartner of Broken Rules.  It's a laser with mirrors puzzle app. We've seen this type of game numerous times. See list below.
 What's Particularly Good
1. The red and yellow reflectors change the color of the beam.
2. Sliders (images 1, 4 and 5)
3. Semi-reflectors (images 1 and 5). These are the vertical-line-mirrors. A yellow beam will pass straight through a yellow mirror, while a red beam will bounce off.
4. Toward the end, brown is the third color to solve.
5. Wormholes. We've seen this many times before. Not sure if they exist in another laser puzzle. However: sometimes the wormholes are on half of a cell while the other half is covered with a tile.  Tapping the tile: they switch places.
There's an interesting musical element to ELOH.  As the balls/beams bounce off, xylophone sounds plunk and pling.

There are supposedly 85 levels but I counted 84 and solved them all.
Christian: good game!

Somebody sent me an email about the fact that I only give credit to one person per game.  True. It's mostly because I'm a bit lazy.  
Andrew Rohrmann did the sound & music.
Jan Hackl did the programming.
Art Direction Team: Daniela Leitner, Lip Comarella, Simon Griesser.

Note to other puzzle app developers: you can't do it all!  Get a team like this.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/eloh/id1406382064?mt=8

Other Laser Puzzles (Not a complete list)
Laser Maze 2015
MatrixLines
HackBeam
Shoot & Reflect 3x3
LaserBox
Photon Lab
Amid Worlds
RouteOut - not a laser game, but uses mirrors
RouteOut 2
Neon Connect
Mirrors & Reflections
Guide the Light
Lasers Free
Laser Logic
Lazors
ReflecTs DS
Laser Glow
logi.
Raytrace

Thursday, October 25, 2018

-look- by Adem KAYIRCI FREE

-look- comes from Adem KAYIRCI. It's a drafting puzzle. The object is to project the 3 dimensional object onto the 3 planar perspectives.
All of Adem's puzzles are 'minimalist' in that: nothing is ever explained. Just figure things out for yourself.
The 3D object can be rotated so this game gets to be fairly easy. I did the first 50 levels very fast. I've stopped at around 90.

This game has 105 levels, which is probably 30 too many.  Still it's fun and fast.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/look/id1310308475?mt=8

Adem's other puzzles
turn,
maze cube
cohex

Friday, October 19, 2018

ColorFold by Martin Pluisch

ColorFold comes from Martin Pluisch.  It's a Ribbon puzzle game. The object is to drag the ribbons across the board to cover squares of the same color.  Key: ribbons can be folded, but not over any of the target squares.
Colorbind (see link below) was the first game to utilize this concept. It's outstanding. Sadly, it's no longer available. It came out in 2010. (Theoretically, old ipads that have this game should be worth more!)
Let's get back to ColorFold. It's very similar and very good.

What's different
1. Random black squares are scattered in the grid to prevent the movement of ribbons.
2. Wormholes: this is a common element in puzzle apps, but it's the first one in a ribbon game.
3. Forced Movement: when there are blue and tan ribbons, the blue ribbon forces an opposite movement in tan. Very interesting: there are a few levels where blue can keep going, but tan gets stopped.

There are 100 levels and they're not too hard. Which is good because I like feeling smart.

Here's an idea for future puzzles: how about when a ribbon goes through a wormhole, it comes out with a different color?

Good game Martin!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/colorfold/id1418593600?mt=8


Other Ribbon Puzzles
Ribbons Puzzle Game
The Weaver
Ribbon Puzzle
TAPES - similar to Colorbind. Excellent
Woven - easy
Colorbind - the first of its kind. Genius
Twisted Lines - very hard
Spreadset Easy til you get to level 7 or 8

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Subwords by Klemens Strasser $1.99

Klemens Strasser recently contacted me about his new game Subwords.  Klemens made Assymetric which I reviewed and liked a lot last year. 
The object in this new game is to spell out the words in various categories. One example: European Countries. 
This is a good word game for just about anybody. The graphics are very nice. And the puzzles are fun. Definitely the kind of game that you can play with somebody.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/subwords/id1205201517?mt=8

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Binary Games by BAD THUMB LTD

Binary Games comes from BAD THUMB LTD.  How fast can you converth binary numbers to decimals and vice versa?
Interesting: there's a dictionary which translates letters and symbols to their assigned binary numbers.  At long last, I now know that '^' is the equivalent of 01011110.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/binary-games/id1418951079?mt=8
badthumbgames.com
info@badthumbgames.com


Monday, October 15, 2018

Light Them Up by No Power-up FREE

Light Them Up comes from No Power-up. The object is to move the square mirrors to light up the bulbs.
There are 70 levels and I've done 26.

There's another laser puzzle app that I'm playing right now that's more interesting.  The graphics of the other game is better. The puzzles are more innovative. Which means I've stopped playing this one.
However, this game is very solid.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/light-them-up/id1436250116?mt=8

Friday, October 12, 2018

COLOR LINK! -brain teaser- by Yuji Kurita FREE


COLOR LINK! -brain teaser comes from Yuji Kurita. It's a 'stick 'em' puzzle. The object is to slide the squares around until everything clumps together.

However, there is a move-count limit for each level.

What's Particularly Good
On some levels, the blocks come in 2 colors, but must still be merged into one group. Tap on a block once and it changes color. This counts as a move. This is a new feature in 'Stick 'em' puzzles.

These are seriously good puzzles.

There are 45 levels, which is perfect! There is an option for users to make their own levels. At the moment, I'm on level 20.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/color-link-brain-teaser/id1436984991?mt=8

Other Very Good Puzzles that have a sticky element (not quite the same though):

Denki Blocks I believe this was the original puzzle app that introduced this concept.
Tile'M All This version is crazy hard.
Blockoban - a must have
Move on Green
Blocky XMAS   from the prolific Bart Bonte
Push Blox from Andrew Duff

Thursday, October 11, 2018

vovu by Ugur Kubat


vovu comes from Ugur Kubat. The object is to tap on the big red circles to make little red circles rotate in order to free up the green circles. Where things get complicated is when there are multiple big red circles. Unquestionably, the overall design is very artistic.
It's a very calm game. Similar to Hook from 2015.
There are 70 levels and I've done 53. There are ads, but they are minimally annoying.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/vovu/id1435900520?mt=8

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Miscellaneous

Read this article from the NY Times about Speed Cubing:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/15/sports/cubing-usa-nationals-max-park.html?emc=edit_ne_20180817&nl=evening-briefing&nlid=6211441420180817&te=1

Loyal Blog Follower Robert Dancer has been on the lookout for puzzles that are getting major updates.
Hexologic has 2 new sets of puzzles.
Unpuzzle also has new features.  When I upgraded this, it wiped out my previous progress. Grrrrrr.


Oskar van Deventer has a hand in this puzzling Kickstarter thing:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/bitcoinproject/bitcoin-puzzle-playing-cards

Friday, October 5, 2018

Bring me Cakes - Fairy Puzzle by Aliaksei Huleu FREE?

Bring me Cakes - Fairy Puzzle comes from Aliaksei Huleu.  (He's from Belarus - where my great-grandmother was born.) This game was published in 2017. I skipped it for 2 reasons. First, it cost $2.99. Second, it looked too juvenile.  Recently, the price was reduced to FREE. I don't know if that's permanent. Either way, this game is very good, and worth paying for.
Bring me Cakes - Fairy Puzzle  is ultimately a route-finding puzzle.  Little Red Riding Hood must gather the doughnuts before getting to the exit. All creatures slide up/down, left/right until they hit an obstacle.
This game has great features.
In the Forest World, which has 44 levels:
1. The wolves will eat the doughnuts and LRRH.
2. The Bears will eat the doughnuts, LRRH and the wolves. Importantly: the bears will knock out the trees, which act as obstacles for the other creatures.
3. The Man with the Shotgun: he will kill the wolves, but will get eaten by the bears.
4. Lakes/Black Holes: LRRH will die if she enters these. However, these are good tools for eliminating the wolves & bears.

In the Mine, which has 48 levels:
5. The Railroad Cars can be pushed like the crates in a Sokoban. However, they only be pushed in one direction: either vertically or horizontally.
6. The Wizard can chop out the stalagmites and stalactites.
7. The green trolls only move 1 space at a time.
8. There are boxes of TNT. Use the trolls to explode what needs exploding.

In the Ice Land, which has 44 levels:
9. LRRH will freeze to death at the end of 5 moves. However, if she lands next to a fire, she's recharged.
10. Big ice blocks are obstacles. LRRH can chop them out herself.
11. A black ghost can extinguish LRRH and the fires.
12. An angel can eliminate the black ghost. More importantly, the angel can ignite wood piles.
13. Once the angel kills the black ghost, she can no longer move.

I've solved all of the Forest & Mine levels.  Most of the Ice Land ones.  The game offers hints and bombs to remove anything annoying, but I'm not using them and I'm picking up every single doughnut. Bring me Cakes - Fairy Puzzle is a big winner. Fun fun!

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bring-me-cakes-fairy-puzzle/id1167655230?mt=8
http://bring-me-cakes.com/

Thursday, October 4, 2018

New Mechanical Puzzle

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/craighill/the-venn-puzzle

There's a new mechanical puzzle on the market called The Venn Puzzle.

It's a 3 piece coordinate motion puzzle. The object: put the 3 pieces together.  $75

From what I've seen on the Kickstarter webpage, it looks a lot like Kuku,which has been out for at least 7 years.  Sonic Games: http://www.sonicgames-uk.com/isis-adventure/products/kuku-puzzle/58
is the producer of Kuku. Kuku is going back on the market very soon and you can buy one for 150 pounds. (At the last International Puzzle Party, I sold my copy for $75 to an old friend. I told him it was a good deal!)

As coordinate motion puzzles go, The Venn Puzzle looks pretty easy. Line up the pieces carefully. Your dexterity is important! And voila.

Kuku is much better because it has 3 internal pins. You can solve it with 0, 1, 2 or 3 pins.


Friday, September 28, 2018

the Sequence [2] by Maxim Urusov $1.99

the Sequence [2]  comes from Maxim Urusov. Max has a history of producing very hard logic games. See list below.
The object in this game is to place various tools on the grid to get the red circle to the target 5 times.
1. The tools are push, pull and rotate.
2. The sequence is vital.
3. The orientation of the red circles is important when the rotation tools are needed, simply getting the circles to their targets is not enough; the circles must be rotated the correct # of degrees.
4. Very very important: some solutions require that one tool moves another tool. These particular puzzles are fantastic.
5. On/Off tools.  Tools can be programmed to run 'all the time', or 'On, then Off', or Off, then On'.
6. Points are awarded on the Leaderboard depending on how efficient one's solutions are.  But this is never explained clearly.

At the moment, I'm stuck on level 31 which I've tried at least 10 times.

The graphics are not attractive. Black/gray/red/white: needs to be brightened up.  Casual puzzlers will be intimidated very quickly.

Max, this game is another winner!  I think more numerous easy levels should be included to draw in more novice puzzlers.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-sequence-2/id1340353421?mt=8
http://ombgames.com/

Max's other games
The Sequence
Hard Logic

Perfect Paths is not from Max. But is extremely hard in a similar way.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

Merge World: 3D Idle Game by Virede FREE

 Merge World: 3D Idle Game  comes from Virede. I've been playing the Animal World mode of this game for more several hours. The object is to merge twins to get to the next animal level.
 I completed all 48 levels, which shows a commitment of time, not necessarily skill.
This game is terrible. Why?  Because it's impossible to lose.  I thought that the game would end if the board filled up before combinations could be made.  I tried to lose, to end my suffering. Instead, I kept going, wondering what the next animal would be. And why all the animals are drawn as rectangular shapes. 2 of the animals, different deer species looked exactly alike. Ridiculous. Well, with a magnifying glass I noticed that the ears and nose were slightly different.

Animals appear every 5 seconds. Sometimes they're wrapped in gift boxes.  Those gift boxes always come with an option to upgrade. Either pay some real money, or watch a stupid ad to advance in this dumb game.

Truly, this is for kids. When I finished, I deleted it.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/merge-world-3d-idle-game/id1419592915?mt=8

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Logic Path ! by Mindsense Games $.99


Logic Path ! comes from Mindsense Games. The object is to rotate the line segments to create a path for the white cube to get to its targets. Sometimes there are multiple targets.
There are 100 levels and I've done about 92.  They get tricky!
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/logic-path/id1382169917?mt=8

You should also play:
Hocus - the best of the bunch. Also the originator of this concept. The rest are clones, but still good.
Crossy Path Puzzle
Hocus Valley
Illusion Maze


Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Cube Puzzler by Rakesh Ranjan FREE

 Cube Puzzler comes from Rakesh Ranjan. The object is to push the blue pieces in a sokoban way to their spots.  Then to move all the red & green pieces, which travel together as a group, to their spots.

The white squares are walls.

There are only 15 levels and I solved them in about 45 minutes.  Not too hard. But the puzzles are fun. 

Rakesh: good job. This game should have between 50 and 75 levels.  Looking forward to them.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/cube-puzzler/id1436432933?mt=8

Similar games (this list is incomplete):

Movez  Pretty much the same as Block Mania but it has 1680 levels. I've solved 592 of them. That's probably enough.
Frozen Ice Cubes  What's different: there's a point of 'no return'
Escapology, reviewed by Nicola Salmoria. He told me about this game ages ago. I played it and enjoyed it, but never blogged about it.
Block Mania Similar to Movez
Move Puzzle - A Funny Strategy Game, Matching Tiles Within Finite Moves 
Zink
Vubu What's different: the vubu men have different powers. Very sophisticated, very intelligent. Possibly the very best in this genre.
Move: A Brain Shifting GameUnmind
Puzzle Dots Game
Box Home Love to play Hexagonal grid
Find the Way

Monday, September 24, 2018

Smallest < by Trevor Hansen FREE


Smallest <  comes from Trevor Hansen. The object is to quickly scan the grid and find the smallest number. The different colors are irrelevant. 
On the smallest grid, I'm #1 in the world (out of 9!) with 222.
On the 5x5 grid, I am second and second to last. At the same time.
I tried the 6x6 board, but the program crashed.
The 4x3 board: I did play it and got around 40. But the Leaderboard isn't working for that.

This is definitely the type of game that we should all be playing to hopefully ward off Alzheimer's.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smallest/id1434978790?mt=8

Friday, September 21, 2018

Charge It - Cute puzzle by Andrey Khudozhidkov FREE


Charge It - Cute puzzle comes from Andrey Khudozhidkov.  The object is to swipe Your Man/Men to their targets until they hit a wall. 
We've seen/done this type of puzzle numerous times before. However, this game has some added new features:
1. Look at image #2. The back row can shift to form a bridge with the other island.
2. The escalator:  See image #4. Your Man/Men must first drop off a package at their respective escalators before going home.
3. The shift button must be landed on before the grid changes shape.

Right now there are only 24 levels with more coming soon.  I really like this game. The graphics are excellent. The puzzles are not too hard, so I can feel smart. They're fun.

Andrey: you simply must produce another 76 levels soon.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/charge-it-cute-puzzle/id1435733551?mt=8

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

God's Orbits by Alexandre La Boissonniere

 God's Orbits comes from Alexandre La Boissonniere. It's a physics/astronomy puzzle.  The object is to place the orbs so that they will complete 1 revolution around the sun.
Alexandre's description:
God has been making planets and stars orbit around each other for billions of years. But as any normal person, He now needs a break. So, as God takes a week’s vacation and goes to CancĂșn, you need to replace Him and do His job.

The game is a gravity simulation based on Newton’s law of universal gravity where you control the speed and direction of a single planet. You’ll need to find the precise trajectory of this planet to make it orbit around another celestial body.

A lot of features are offered to diversify the different challenges at hand.

Features:
• Every planet in our solar system
• Suns
• Antimatter stars
• Neutron stars
• Wormholes
• Black holes

The game contains a total of 60 levels (and more to come). The first 7 are free and all the others can be unlocked with one single purchase.


I've done levels 1-5. I'm stuck on 6.  It's all guess and check and then watch the orbs either collide or fall into the sun. I'm stuck on level 7 too. It's very cool though.

Of those levels, I didn't encounter antimatter stars or neutron stars or black holes.  I like the concept a lot. But it's not a pure logic puzzle.  
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/gods-orbits/id1425232612?mt=8

Monday, September 17, 2018

Five 20 by Mike Lowe



Un-Scramble as many Five Letter words as fast as possible and beat the 20 second clock. Every Completed word resets the 20 second clock. You have 3 opportunities to skip a word if you just can't figure it out. 

What will be your highest score?


My high score is a mere 8. I showed this game to a group of 5 others and we made it a team effort.  We got 22.

Fun and fast game.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/five-20/id1435843938?mt=8

Friday, September 14, 2018

Push Blox by Andrew Duff $1.99

Screenshot Image
This game is a winner.
Screenshot Image
Andrew Duff contacted me 2 months ago about his new game Push Blox.  It's a 'stick 'em' puzzle. The object is to push all the red squares into one clump. The delay in reviewing this game is based on the fact that it took so long to get through some of the levels.
Screenshot Image
Your Man, the outlined black square, does all the pushing.
Features:
1. Black squares are solid walls.
2. Gray squares can be eaten.
3. Blue squares must also be clumped together.  When that objective is complete, all the blue disappears.
4. Gravity.  All red and blue pieces will fall to the bottom unless supported by black or gray cells. I believe that no other 'stick 'em' game has gravity as a feature. (See list below.)
5. Important concept: look at the second image.  See the lone red square on top? If Your Man eats the gray cell under it and then moves left/right, it will fall to the bottom, which is not good. The Move: slide left then right immediately and the red will shift to the right.
6. Red laser beams: don't let Your Man get killed.
7. Conveyor belts.
8. Keys must be landed on to open locks. More significantly, if there are 2 keys, then 2 separate pieces must stay on both of them in order to open the locks.
Screenshot Image

The graphics of Push Blox are fine. There's original music, but Loyal Blog Followers know that I turn off all sound to preserve battery life. I'm guessing the music is good.

The puzzles themselves are terrific.  There are 34 levels altogether. However, many levels have multiple 'aha' moments. I've done 29 levels, but feel like I've done at least 50 levels.

Level 3-5, also called Valhalla, took me forever to solve. I easily made 50 attempts before figuring it out.

Level 3-6, Rescue, wasn't as hard as Valhalla, but is elegantly designed.

What could be better:
1. The undo button is only good for a few moves and not useful if Your Man dies by laser.
2.  I stopped at levels 4-4 and 4-5 in part because the grids are so busy with so many elements.
These are minor complaints.

Andrew, great job! I really enjoyed your game but must move on. Everybody else: I spent more than a month on this game.  Multiple times, while driving my car, I would think of a new strategy for solving whatever level I was stuck on. The price is more than fair. Don't cheat yourself by avoiding the payment.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/push-blox/id1405360920?mt=8
https://lonelydeckchair.itch.io/push-blox
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=love.to.androidDemo
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=love.to.androidDemo&hl=en_GB

The Lite version: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/push-blox-lite/id1416217199?mt=8

Other Very Good Puzzles that have a sticky element (not quite the same though):

Denki Blocks I believe this was the original puzzle app that introduced this concept.
Tile'M All This version is crazy hard.
Blockoban - a must have
Move on Green
Blocky XMAS   from the prolific Bart Bonte