This is a review of indy developer, Arcen Games’ newest title, “Tidalis”.
Tidalis is a 2-D Computer only Puzzle Genre game. This is unique for myself as I haven’t purchased a puzzle-genre game in years. I am not the biggest fan of puzzle games as they tend to be either too easy or too challenging. However, this game has changed my attitude towards puzzle games.
Tidalis is a combination of Tetris, Bejeweled and some other parts of puzzle genre mixed into one unique game. This game focuses on using “Streams” to connect blocks in a falling block puzzle. You have various different objectives depending on what your doing, but the main gist of the game is to make the stream hit 3 or more blocks of the same color and create chains with the same or different colors of blocks. The game in true Arcen Games fashion has different challenges to challenge you and make you think on your feet.
Here is Arcen Game’s “At a Glance” description of this game.
At A Glance
– Puzzle game with casual appeal, hardcore depth, and an addictive new mechanic.
I agree with this statement. This is a game that you can pick up, do a few puzzles and then set it down for later. Or you can be as hard core as you want. So far I have not reached the end of the “main adventure” of the game so I’m guessing those who like an “adventure” in their puzzle games, this one meets this. It is also being improved upon until its release so this feature of the game should be nice and plenty for any solo player.
– Multiplayer co-op and competitive play.
I have not yet had the chance to test this part of Tidalis. It is available atm, but only on the local LAN network. So I cannot comment on this. However, if Ai War Fleet Command is any indication, it will be a very nice feature of Tidalis.
– Adventure with action-oriented levels and puzzle-oriented side objectives.
The adventure area definitely meets these expectations. The puzzles are varied and fun. Even some that bend your mind! It really caught me off guard when the game adds “weight” tothe puzzle. You’ll have to check out the game as I could go on and on about the variations in this game. This is what really makes the game great.
– Rich, painterly art style and beautiful music.
This is really what is going to bring me back to this game time after time. The music is beautifully done and works well. When completeing waves, the different colors have their own kind of “finishing” music. When you do really well, you are rewarded with some really nice “congrats!” music in the puzzle. The graphics are 2-D but are truly rich in colors and great to see. The backgrounds all follow a common theme which roots you in the idea of a relaxing island with you playing a game.
– Players can create and share whole new themes, levels, and adventures.
A feature in the game that I’ve had some time to play around with it. This gives the game a really long life since you can customize your own levels and have a different experience every time.
A few criticisms:
Resolution increased would be nice. However, I have a feeling this is probably permanent. It is only a minor gripe as my monitors are 22″ so its no big deal if your on smaller screens.
A few graphic slow downs do happen. I am unsure if its my end or just the fact that this game is in BETA. It seems only to happen at certain times such as selecting a new mission for your adventure mode. This has since been fixed in BETA patches and is no longer an issue.
This game has Arcen Games’ familiar stamp on it. It is a game that refreshes this genre I thought had long died since the glory days of Tetris and Bejeweled. It has depth, great graphics for a 2-D game, wonderful music and an addictive gaming style. It is as relaxing as it is intense. My hope is to eventually play this against someone else. I have a feeling that will make the game that much more enriching of an experience. Until then, I will continue to play this truly well made game. And for a BETA release, its well done. Kudos to Arcen Games, this game shows that you as a company have a very rich future ahead. I will no longer refer to you as that “Indy Strategy game developer” but as an all-genre developing company.
So to conclude, this game has been a lot of fun to play. Period. 😀 Currently Tidalis is $9.99 on their main website: Here. They are saying it will be released sometime in July of 2010.
“Arcen Games: Our games are known for their deep gameplay, 2D graphics, and very notable AI. Our company is known for an intense commitment to co-op gaming, our extremely pro-customer business practices, and our deep love of each game we make.” I’d also like to add that your games have a really rich sense of exploration. Each time you play a game of yours, there is always something new to be discovered. My most loved kind of gaming.
“Arcen Games about Tidalis: What happens when a notable indie strategy developer makes a puzzle game? We have no idea. Our first game happened to be a notable indie strategy game, but we’ve never considered ourselves tied to any particular genre. Truth is, we made Tidalis because we like puzzle games and we wanted to take our opportunity to innovate in that space.”
(Quotes from company website: Here).
Thanks for reading my blog and keep on watching for more content posted here!
King Isaac Linksr