Crash


Blockz
By Raymond Russell
Spectrum 48K/128K/+2/+3

 
Published in Crash #1

Blockz

When you think of block puzzle games, the usual Tetris-types spring to mind, or indeed the original itself. Many have come and gone and, with most, the aim is to clear the screen of the blocks to move to the next level.

This one, however, is a little different. Not content with you having to fit blocks into spaces, author Raymond Russell does not want you to have too much control on which way the blocks move - their movement is dictated for you.

This can mean only one thing - lots of planning and forward thinking. With the challenge of the blocks playing by their own rules, and a time limit to boot, you have here a very tricky yet compelling puzzler indeed.

Paul Davies

Blockz

BlockZ introduces itself with a nice flashy logo and a menu with a selection of options including a demonstration to show you how the game works. The title music is quite splendid and features different tunes throughout the game which are also very good.

Start the game and you'll find a wall surrounding the screen and a set of blocks around the inside. To clear the blocks, you need to find a way to get them to touch one another at the end of their move. The blocks have different types of arrows on them that dictate which way they will move when you select them.

An arrow moving to the right and then bending upwards will have it moving right and then turning upwards, for example. Some will have multiple directions whilst others just the one. It's worth noting that you can move each block more than once if there is space to do so - although each of the moves will be in the same direction.

Blockz

What proves interesting is that should your block have more than one direction but is not able to complete its initial move, it will carry out its secondary direction which often comes in handy.

BlockZ is a nicely put together game, and coupled with a great soundtrack makes the package complete. It's a great challenge with a nice new twist to the puzzle genre of games that will have you playing for a good while. It will also have you pulling at your hair at some points though. In a good way.

Gordon King

Sedate, tile-based puzzlers are the perfect thing for a rainy Sunday afternoon; the roast is in the oven and you just want to slouch and not overly occupy your adrenal glands during a mini-gaming session. BlockZ is just the ticket for that. From the outset, this taxing little title does not hold your hand - one mistake and it will cost you a retry life.

Blockz

In the aesthetics department, it's not the prettiest thing to look at but everything is very functtional and it's clear what each block's characteristics are.

Each level doesn't really change in appearance all that much so you pretty much have fifty levels of similar puzzles to solve. It is in this that it gets a tad repetitive for me as there is no sense of progress beyond 'yet another level'. I did find the time limit to the level both enjoyable and frustrating.

Comments

Control Keys: Q, A, O, P. Redefinable.
Graphics: A good smattering of colour.
Sound: 128K tune and effects.
General Rating: A clever, but fiddly puzzle game.

Paul DaviesGordon King

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