Simple Gameplay. Tons of Content. Lesson in Frustration. –
Puzzle games are rather difficult to create as players need to be challenged but not pushed to the point of rage-quitting frustration. Unfortunately, 1001 Crystal Mazes Collection has an overwhelming amount of content but this is clearly a lesson in quantity over quality.
There are dozens of similar crate pushing games like Sokoban and Chip’s Challenge but this DSiWare downloadable title differs from the rest by having the player push gems instead of crates or boxes. The goal is simple, move a bunch of gems from their starting position through a maze without getting stuck. Each level is either very easy or very challenging (but mostly challenging). Yes, there are hundreds of levels in this low price download but most gamers will not feel the need, or have the tenacity, to complete more than a dozen of them.
This is a puzzle game that will test your mettle but the frustration comes from making one wrong move. The undo button makes things a little easier, or rather a little more convenient, but one wrong move can set back the entire stage results in minutes, if not hours, lost. In some cases, it is just easier to restart a level altogether. Only the most patient of players will enjoy a game like this.
Looking passed the extreme challenge, the overall presentation is nothing short of a joke. Some hunky dude and his Barbie girlfriend act as the avatars for this gem pushing sim. But instead of an actual humanoid character pushing gems from an overhead view, the player actually controls a round picture of this guy and his female companion. It is so awkward controlling a non-animated floating head to push giant gems around a maze. In fact, it would have been better to just control a one-color pixelated box than have to stare at this creepy frozen face for hours. Then there are strange pictures featured in the background along with a nonsensical touch screen. The presentation values are absurd and over the top ridiculous.
The gameplay is quite simple but the challenge will undoubtedly turn off most players even though there is a ton of content available for only a few bucks.
Not As Good As: Chip’s Challenge
Better Than: 1000 Crystal Mazes
Also Try: Kwirk
By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief myGamer.com