January 23rd, 2012 | By Takeshi Mochida
The Ancient Aztec Empire used to have a game called “Stones of Montezuma”. It was forgotten until it was discovered in a temple of Xochipilli, the God of all games. In this game, you will be training your skills to achieve the Master of the Stones. The goal is to shoot a stone with matching designs. Colliding two stones with the same design will cause it to ‘explode’ and disappear, and different stones will just bounce off each other. You must finish the level without losing all of you life, indicated at the top of the screen with the number of white ‘chance stones’. Games like Frozen Bubble and Snood have a similar concept.
You might need a little time to get used to the controls. Once you touch the screen, you can drag left or right to move the stone. Dragging up or down will adjust the launching speed of the stone. The moment you lift your fingers, the stone will be launched. I didn’t like that I couldn’t let my finger go until I launched the stone. In later levels, I often had to wait for more than 15 seconds before launching it. In Montezuma Stones, you can only fire your stone straight, so you will have to aim very carefully. Also, this game is different from others in that the stones will be in constant motion on screen, which adds another challenge for the player. If another stone is between you and the target, you will have to wait for the path to clear.
In addition to normal stones, there are ‘special stones’ that will help (and harm) you. Special stones can be activated by hitting it with any stone. The effects are temporary, and a timer bar will show up on the top telling you how much time you have left until the ability expires.
This game has excellent graphics that utilize the Retina display. However, the game lacks good soundtracks. Its physics and sound effects realistically imitate billiard balls. However, I don’t see variation in the BGM, and it gets boring to listen to. Because I can’t listen to my own music while the game is open, it is a little disappointing.
Nevertheless, this game is nicely polished and well worth its price of $0.99. With 80 levels, you will definitely get hours of fun out of this seemingly simple game. The Oak Team, the developers, made a great game that can be enjoyed by everyone.