Ophiophobia is the fear snakes. Cartophobia is the fear of poor American import puzzlers. Are we sufferers? Read on.
VARIATIONS ON THE THEME
There are five sorts of screen for the snakes to slither down. The weirdestshaped ones are actually easier to deal with than they look. Flask and X, for example, are wider at the bottom leading more chances to store and match the snakes.
|The cyan snake eats one of his own.
Eating big snakes with little ones is a good
way of gaining yourself space.
|Above: Snakes ‘smell’ with their tongues.|
|And ducks ‘walk’ using a kind of webbed ‘feet’.|
GOOD, BAD OR UGLY?
Was Tetris any good? Eh? It was, wasn’t it? But was it almost impossible to improve on? Hmm? Yes. Most people will agree that it was. So why do people like Bullet Proof keep trying?
The thing is, this isn’t a bad game. Snakes drop from the top and wriggle to the lowest point they can reach, depending on the direction in which they’re facing. When a snake of a certain colour and pattern meets another the same, it makes the first one disappear. So the trick is to keep every snake on the screen accessible, so when a similar on drops you can match them up and help to reduce the mess on screen.
When the matched snakes disappear, the rest of them shuffle down into any available gap. This often leads to more matches and so on. It all works okay, and you can build up matches so that multiple clearings can occur. This, in two-player mode, leads to irritating block appearing to your opponents’ screen.
But let’s go back to the beginning theme here, it’s not as good as Tetris. Only people with a penchant for collecting Tetris-like puzzle games will be hooked. It’s fine, sure but why would you want it? variety? Well there is that, I suppose.
Verdict: A puzzle game that works as it was designed to. But it’s not as engrossing, rewarding to play or fun as tetris. So only top snake fans should buy it.