May 30, 2011

Also, I Really Don’t Think Water Drops Bounce Like That.

Wandering about on the iPad, I sometimes come across games that are neat and stuff. Recently I noticed that Enigmo HD was a buck. This, in it’s non-HD form, was one of those early iPhone games that everyone said you had to play, but I had never played it. I thought it would be a good idea to give it a try.

Enigmo HD is really terrible.

In theory, it’s not. The idea is that you have streams of various liquids, and a certain number of tools. You need to get those liquids into their respective bottles as they stream out of the start point by putting things in the way of the stream. There’s stuff like a little tube that makes the liquid shoot out faster, a little trampoline that lets you bounce water off of it, and walls to stop water in it’s tracks. Each of these pieces can be moved and spun about in order to solve the level. That seems like a fine idea for a puzzle game.

However, the controls are complete and utter garbage. I mean, just completely. There is a ring around each object when you tap on it to spin it around and rotate it, but if you tap and drag on the object itself, you move it. However, I would say 90 percent of the time when I went to move one of the objects, it would start spinning it instead. You had to be so extremely precise, you couldn’t actually do it. This just baffles me, as they have this ring on the screen that just tells the player “PUT YOUR FINGER HERE TO ROTATE, OR INSIDE TO MOVE THE PIECE” but it doesn’t actually work like that. Moving the pieces into position is an exercise in frustration.

That could maybe be forgiven if the game wasn’t brutally time-based. There’s a timer ticking down with bonus points when you start the level. I have nothing against bonus points for solving things quickly. However, when that bonus point meter runs out, you lose the level and have to start over. This is a puzzle game, where you want to sit down and look at the level and ponder and think about how to solve it. Having a strict timer like that just goes against what I enjoy in these sorts of casual puzzle games. Add to that how you can’t actually manipulate the puzzle in an efficient way and thus will run out of time and, well, fuck this game!

Enigmo HD is not good! Not good at all. Maybe the original version was less stupid, but this is one of the worst iOS games I’ve played in a long time. I don’t often wish I hadn’t spent a buck on an iOS game, because it’s such a little investment for something I want to try, but this made me feel like I had wasted my money. Don’t touch it.

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