Review: Blockado Jungle

We got fun n' games.

In short, Blockado Jungle is a modernised, fully-featured tribute to the much-loved board game, Rush Hour. Though the iOS has already seen its fair share of titles trying to emulate the block-sliding puzzler, including Unblock Me, none are more engaging and aesthetically pleasing as Bitfield’s latest release.

For those still scratching their heads, let’s take it back a step. In Blockado, players are tasked with moving one or more treasure chests from their start locations to designated exit areas. Here’s the tricky part; scattered across every level are also a number of other pieces; these need to be moved in order to a create a clear passage through which you can then shift the treasure chest. Note that pieces can only be moved length ways, which is where the real challenge lies.

As you progress, the puzzles will become increasingly difficult; you will go from one chest to two and grids will multiply in size. To make the game even more formidable, Bitfield has introduced a number of unique pieces such as bridge blocks, spring blocks, and even magnet blocks. Though they seem like a daunting addition at first, after getting comfortable with the unfamiliar mechanics, players will appreciate how diverse and enjoyable Blockado can be.

Even when your brain is at its peak, there are also going to be a few puzzles in  Blockado which leave you absolutely stumped. However, instead of leaving you to eventually figure out the solution yourself, Bitfield has included several helpful features which keeps the game from becoming frustrating. Firstly, if you have no clue as to how to complete your current puzzle, there is an auto-solve option, giving you the choice of simply having the challenge done for you or watching a step-by-step guide. Of course, this feature could simply be abused to reach the end of Blockado Jungle in minutes, though its intended purpose is to act as an aid which will have you kicking yourself from time to time.

The core game features 70 puzzles in total, 40 of which are scattered across four maps in Blockado’s “Adventure Mode.” Here, players are tasked with trekking across the jungle in order to recover ancient artifacts. Each map consists of ten inter-linking checkpoints which are represented with puzzles which also branch off into a small cluster of “hard” challenges. Outside of Adventure Mode, another 30 bonus puzzles are available and it doesn’t stop there. Blockado also features a “Puzzle Scanner;” across various outlets (including our own) and Bitfield’s own designated web space, players can use the camera on their iOS device to scan a code and unlock even more challenges. Did we also mention that fans can also create their own levels online and share them with the Blockado community?

One of the game’s strongest assets is without doubt its full-3D visual appeal. Though fairly basic, the jungle background brings with it a certain atmospheric element, Blockado also allowing players to rotate the in-game camera angle however they want. By the time you get sick of the tropical setting, it’s likely that Bitfield will have already launched Blockado Desert, Mountain and Deep Sea.

Pros

  • Simple concept and gameplay, ideal for short bursts of gaming.
  • Every puzzle feels unique, though equally satisfying.
  • Difficulty-busting features including a rewind feature and “Auto-Solve.”
  • Plenty of content available, extended via the puzzle scanner and user-generated levels.

Cons

  • If you’re not a big fan of Rush Hour, it’s unlikely Blockado will twist your arm.

If you simply want a puzzler which can be played in short, two minute bursts, Blockado is definitely worth a punt. If you are searching for a puzzler which tries to broaden the experience through unique ways of unlocking bonus content, it’s time to part with yet another fifty nine pence.

Score: 8/10

4 Comments

  1. Bloody hell. Lovely music in the trailer. Especially the tranquil ending. Is that in the game itself? Worth a purchase just for that.

    • Nice music, reminded me of Adiemus.

  2. Looks like a high tech version of the brilliant Unblock Me for iOS, and that’s a good thing.
    The music was very Travel Channel-y, though… ;)

  3. Great review, UnBlock Me is one of the few games i actually keep on my ipod and it looks like i’ll be adding Blockado now too.

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