A Paladin’s Review: Tidalis. What Would Appear to Be A Typical Match-Three Puzzle Game is Anything But Typical.
- Genre: Tactical Match Three Puzzle Game.
- Developed & Published by: Arcen Games
- Platform: Windows, Mac and Linux.
- Business Model: Base Game.
- Copy Purchased by Myself
Overall Gameplay Thoughts
Tidalis has a match-three mechanic in which you create “streams” to match blocks together. Instead of drawing matches, you initiate a stream from a single block in the direction you want it to go and match other blocks. Those blocks’ direction can be changed on the fly and you will want to. These streams can be manipulated in all sorts of weight with gravity, obstacles, water and much more. It can be insane trying to achieve the objective(s) of each puzzle and there are a lot in the main campaign. This can create some rather unique combinations and mechanics that I haven’t seen in any other match-three puzzle to date. There’s a very long single player campaign and a silly multiplayer mode as well.
All expected PC settings are here though resolution options are a bit funky. Its due to how the art is rendered and at high resolutions, the game will look smaller and vice versa. Multiplayer worked last I checked as its peer-to-peer and is pretty amusing for a puzzle game. Key bindings, AA, V-sync and more are included.
Tidalis was what started me into the hobby of reviewing games. As such, this review is not how I would do things today, but I’m leaving it up because it’s important to know where I came from. I wrote the review in two parts. While it’s rough around the edges and then some, I feel that it still holds up. But my final thoughts: This is my favorite traditional puzzle game to date. Tidalis has something both casual players and hardcore players can enjoy. The graphics are beautiful, the soundtrack is superb and the gameplay is well polished. There’s a lot of variety and depth to the stream mechanic which is quite surprising. It’s argued that the depth is its greatest weakness but if you’re like me, and are tired of dull puzzlers, then you should give Tidalis a try. Recent updates have patched up any remaining bugs Tidalis had and gave it a Linux version as well.
Thanks for reading!