January 21st, 2013 | By Mark Isaacson
The Voxel Agents, creators of the award winning Train Conductor series on iOS, are just about set to launch their next big thing. Whilst there are no trains involved this time around, there’s still plenty to keep your brain occupied.
Puzzle Retreat is the name, but don’t expect singing around a campfire or toasting marshmallows. Nope, this is a true puzzle game in every sense of the word with a few tricks all of its own. The instructions are simple enough, guide blocks of ice to fill holes in the play field and make sure you use all the blocks available to do so. Gradually the game starts to add more and more block types and larger puzzle board sizes that will test your skills.
I’ve had some hands on time with the game and so far it’s just what I was hoping for. With every puzzle I completed I felt compelled to see what was around the next corner and so far not once have I been disappointed. There’s a ton of puzzles to complete, and in truth I’ve only scratched the surface of what the Agents have created, but it’s been very enjoyable so far thanks to some colourful visuals and plenty of nice touches.
The different block types of Puzzle Retreat really spice things up even early on. There’s one that will evaporate your ice cubes and another that completely blocks your path. With every new mechanic comes a quick tutorial puzzle of sorts, dialling back the difficulty level just enough to get the gist of what these new blocks can do before gradually turning things back up again. The puzzles using those fire block are my favourite so far, such a smart concept to essentially delete your existing blocks to open the space for others.
One thing of note is the extra levels to unlock. The opening pack of puzzles (of which there are quite a few) come as part of the game at the outset, whilst a number of expansion packs are available to purchase at any time. Now I realise some of you may be scared off by the idea of having to purchase more content, but there’s the promise of plenty more puzzles well after the launch and at very fair prices too. We shall see how that turns out, but from what I’ve played so far, I’d say it would be worth investing in.
I’ve got a lot more to play of Puzzle Retreat so I’ll keep on trucking in order to give you a full review. The game officially launches on the App Store this coming January 31st. Keep an eye out and visit the Puzzle Retreat Facebook page for updates from the team.