Picross DS

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Reviews & Guides' started by Rod, Dec 15, 2008.

Dec 15, 2008

Picross DS by Rod at 2:51 PM (1,521 Views / 0 Likes) 8 replies

  1. Rod
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    Member Rod GBAtemp Fan

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    [​IMG]


    Review

    Picross DS is a puzzle game developed by Jupiter Corp. (Yoshi's Cookie, Kingdom Hearts CoM, The World Ends With You) and published by Nintendo, released in 2007 in various regions. The premise of the gameplay, like any good puzzler, is very simple and addictive: you have a board with a certain number of panels (5x5, 10x10, 20x20 and so on) and there are indications of how many tiles must be marked on each line and each column. By marking the most obvious lines and columns, you'll reveal the awnser to the hardest ones. It's way easier than it sounds on paper, and well explained by the game's How to Play. Kind of reminisces Sudoku.


    [​IMG]


    The word "Picross" is a short term for "picture crossword". When you finish the puzzle you'll form a certain figure, varying from a simple L-letter to a hockey player to Super Mario. You're given 60 minutes to complete any of these puzzles: if you finish it under the time limit you'll get a simple but colorful animation of the given figure, if you finish it over the limit you'll just receive a static figure in black and white. It's no real big differencial, but it kind of urges you to unlock every single animation, making you try again for a new time record.
    By now you must think the game can be easily finished by just random trial and error of what tile to mark next, but it's exactly the opposite: every single puzzle on the game can be finished by logic and attention to detail. Actually, you'll be encouraged to not make a mistake during the course of the game, since you'll receive a increasing penalty or your 60-minute limit every time you mark a wrong tile.


    Now that the juice is overall explained, it's time to go to the game modes, and Picross DS packs more ways to play that you could probably think. The main Picross mode is divided in:
    - How to Play (a single tutorial)
    - Easy Mode (introdutory, small puzzles)
    - Normal Mode (main puzzles, dimensions starts small and ends up pretty big, a mistake gives you a penalty)
    - Free Mode (a lot like Normal, but you WON'T be warned of the mistakes nor get penalyzed, making it more challenging).
    Normal and Free will start with only 4 levels open, but more will come as you complete the puzzles, presenting bigger and greater challenges.
    Plus, there's Daily Picross (small puzzles, from finishing the puzzle to finding the error, makes a graph comparison of your daily results, more modes are open with time), Single and Multi-Card Multiplayer, possibility to create, play, share and upload you own puzzles to friends, Wi-Fi Connection usability to challenge against any person or downloading packs from the previous games of the series, such as Mario's Picross. In the end, the whole game packs more than 300 puzzles, making you occupied for a pretty long time (it took me a whole year to finish all of them! [​IMG])


    [​IMG]


    With such a well-crafted package, Picross DS is one of those that's more than the sum of its parts. The gameplay is solid enough to keep you easily hooked for hours, days, even months. It is undoubtly my most played game on the system (I'm sure I spent more than 3 months not playing any other game on the system but this one), and even finishing all the puzzles wasn't enough to keep me from shelving it. Give it a try: most people that gave this one a chance didn't leave unsatisfied. You might just find one of you new favorite puzzlers ever.



    Breakdown:

    Graphics:
    A great and simplistic art style reigns supreme here. Nor too kiddy neither too bold, it can easily suit any kind of public. There's isn't any kind of real flash to it (such as seen on other puzzlers like Lumines or Meteos) but that's far from a problem: here, it never was needed in first place.
    Rating: [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Sound:
    While the music is nothing extraordinary, is more than enough. Some tunes are nice and fun to listen to while you're cracking you head on the puzzles, some not so much, but at least there's some variety depending on the game mode... sort of. SFX are basic, but may change depending on the Level's theme.
    Rating: [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Design:
    Fun, addictive, more challenging than it looks, great stress reliever, easily suited for any type of gender and age range, lots and lots of puzzles. What more could you expect?
    Rating: [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Closing comments
    Picross DS is one of the most worthwhile games available on the system. If you're not playing it yet, what the heck are you waiting for? Go on and play it! NOW! You'll thank me later! [​IMG]

    FINAL SCORE

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    [​IMG]PLATINUM AWARD[​IMG]
     
  2. litium

    Member litium GBAtemp Regular

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    It was a great game, a little bit tricky tough. Awesome review [​IMG]
     
  3. Heran Bago

    Member Heran Bago Where do puyo come from?

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    Great game, great review.

    The only thing that got to me about this game was that there's only one background music and it get s annoying after a while.
     
  4. sfunk

    Member sfunk GBAtemp Regular

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    Maybe I'm not remembering correctly but in the options, isn't there four music selections? I remember Jazz being one of them. I might be mistaken; I don't have my DS here to test it out.
     
  5. Kaos

    Member Kaos Good show!

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    It's good game, and your review is good.

    One thing you should mention: if you are using the (U) version, there are currently about 700 puzzles available for download over WiFi.

    That's twice the amount of puzzles that actually come with the game.
     
  6. Rod
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    Member Rod GBAtemp Fan

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    Good LORD. I guess people weren't kidding when they said the USA version had way more puzzles. [​IMG]
    I played most of my save on the E version, switched to U later on (save was compatible) but never got the chance to use Wi-Fi since then. This is real awesome news; if you don't mind, may I add this info to the review itself?


    Thanks for the positive feedback, guys! [​IMG]
     
  7. JPdensetsu

    Member JPdensetsu GBAtemp Addict

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    Great review, I didn't try the game a bit... I 'm not a puzzle fan, but I'm going to to try it [​IMG]
     
  8. Kaos

    Member Kaos Good show!

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    You can add that info. I don't mind.

    Another thing to keep in mind. More downloadable puzzles become available every few months. I wouldn't be surprised if it hits 1000 downloadable puzzles at some point - 3 times the amount in the actual game.
     
  9. ZeroEXE93

    Member ZeroEXE93 GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Loved the game, probably one of the best puzzle games for the DS. Nice review btw. [​IMG]
     

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