Confusing Colorful Dots
By Brett Wolfe
Reviewed on Xbox One
Released on December 8th, 2016 on Xbox One, also available on PC
Developer: SometimesYou Publisher: SometimesYou
Puzzlers are an interesting genre that has been around for as long as anyone can remember. However, recently there has been a spike in the amount of puzzle titles emerging on the current generation of gaming. Some are phenomenal and others do not have the same luxury of success. Energy Cycle, a puzzler developed by SometimesYou is an interesting title that is hard to lump into one of those two categories.
The first word that pops up when looking at this game is simplistic. It contains very few features other than a puzzle mode, time attack, and infinite play mode. There is not much on offer from this title. The puzzle mode is the ‘campaign’ and is comprised of 28 levels of increasingly difficult levels. While the levels get more difficult, they do not vary that much and blend together. The time attack is a set of random levels from the campaign that you must solve within a limit of two minutes. Infinite play is similar to the time attack besides the lack of a time limit. The task that is required of you to complete each level is to turn every dot into the same color. There is a setting in the options where you can either choose between a set of three colors or seven colors. For the purpose of this review, I played through the game on the setting of three. The colors of the dot can be changed from white, blue, and green and each level can be completed with whichever color you feel fit. The color changes on both the point that you choose to change and all corresponding dots that it adjacent to. For example, if the dot is all by itself, it is the only one that changes. However, if you select a corner piece, the dots on both lines connected to that spot.
Visually this game is very plain. The only graphics are a black background, the colored dots, and a picture of an electric cat that pops up when you beat the level. From what I see, the majority of the time spent working on the graphics was wasted drawing those cats that have no effect on the game. I found nothing different with the supposed soundtrack. A small variety of electric style of music and most of it got old throughout the playthrough.
When it came to requesting this title, I sought it out. I wanted to play this title because it looked like it had potential. While this game fell far from the expectations that I originally had, I still had fun playing the game. The puzzles were enjoyable at the beginning and once it got more difficult, but in the end, the puzzles got repetitive and boring after playing them. I felt that even though there were only 28 levels, there was not enough variety to want to continue playing it. Another issue that I had was the game was incredibly short. Playing through the campaign and sometimes attack and infinite play to get a feel for them netted me around 45 minutes to an hour of gameplay. This is with me having a bit of trouble with some of the levels and having to play multiple times to complete.
In the end, Energy Cycle is a small title that is enjoyable but has very little to offer. The game is priced at $3 USD and in my honest opinion that is the best thing about this game. The low-price point makes up for the lack of content. However, unless you are an avid puzzle player, you may not find much enjoyment from this title.
*Note: A copy of this game was provided for the purpose of the review.
Final Score: 4/10
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