Puzzle Quest: Galactrix
Puzzle Quest: Galactrix is by the same company that brought you Puzzle Quest, D3. This time around instead of donning armor and a sword, you will be piloting a ship around the universe trying to restore order, and complete quests. For those who may think that this is just going to be the original Puzzle Quest, just re-skinned, you'd be wrong. The action has some similarities but the vast majority of it is different. This review is for the PC version, downloaded through Steam.
The graphics look crisp. The details that went into each ship really show, as well as the overall appearance of each galaxy. I really wish there was a bit more variety when it came to choosing your character's picture though.
The music and sounds seem like your average space age game. I'm not saying that you're not going to enjoy what you hear, but you're not going to be blown away by it either. It is sufficient for what it needs to do.
The controls are simplistic, and reliable. You're going to be using the mouse for your actions. When it comes to navigating your ship around you are going to find that the ship follows the mouse, unless you click on an object to go to. The puzzle battle mode that you'll be engaging in for hacking gates, mining resources, and battling your opponents will all have the same controls, and they are click one piece and then click another to make them swap, they have to be adjacent, and you better be making a match as a result. You can also, during battles, click on your attachments (weapons), when you have enough resources, to make its effect occur.
The gameplay has you starting off as a recruit finally done with training, and all of a sudden, while taking control of your own ship, things start to happen. You're going to be spending a good amount of time seeing the puzzle interface, so get good at it. My recommendation is remember the direction that the first piece moves is going to be how all the pieces will shift after making your match. As stated before you're not only going to be doing battle in this interface, but you'll also be trying to hack gates, mine resources, and haggle for lower prices on goods, to name of few. You're going to have to keep in mind your cargo hold size, as when you mine, and when you battle you're going to be collecting goods. Each of the different puzzle types is going to have different puzzle pieces showing on the screen, and the way to end the "round" will be different.
This game is a very well made game, and I wish I really could have gotten into it, but there were a couple of problems that stopped me in my tracks. The first had more to do with my OS, Vista, which decided at random intervals to crash the game and make me restart the computer, so I was never able to have any prolonged sessions of play. The second on is actually on the game, and that is that there is A LOT of luck that gets involved rather quickly in the game if you are going to be any good at the game. I can’t tell you how many times I jumped for joy when on the 20 time trying to hack a Medium Difficulty gate, I finally got it. I also had times where I couldn’t even accomplish hacking the Easy gates. I think what it comes down to is that the true balance for the game isn’t there. Do I enjoy the game, yes, but I really wish that I was able to experience more of it and not feel as if I’m just bouncing around the handful of galaxies that I was able to unlock by luck. If you are a puzzle guru, this is the game for you. If you like a challenge, but don’t like it when you feel that you were cheated out by dumb luck, this isn’t the game for you. This game is worth the price tag, but I think that it could have been so much more. A little side note before I right the score, I hear that the DS version is getting kicked in the nuts by the crazy loading that has to happen for everything. Puzzle Quest: Galactrix, with all that it is, gets a 7.0 out of 10.