Cut from the same cloth as Jupiter’s mind-boggling Picross series, Dutch developer Goodbye Galaxy Games delivers a second helping of their block-based puzzler in Tappingo 2.
Arriving on the Nintendo eShop in Europe several months after the puzzler’s fiendish machinations had those in North America scratching their heads, it is CIRCLE Entertainment that has once again done us the courtesy of negotiating their way through Europe’s rating boards.
Whatever the reason behind the delay, those that purchase this equally affordable sequel will discover just as much to challenge their deductive skills as in Tappingo 2’s predecessor. It sticks very much to the same beat, players challenged to solve pixel art puzzles by tapping on numbered blocks so that a coloured line extends in a chosen direction.
A single tutorial level is all that’s necessary to teach you the basics as a lone coin appears before your eyes, but it isn’t long before you are moved on to less predictable items. There’s ingenuity behind such an easy to grasp concept, the player left to satisfy their own curiosity by slowly beginning to construct Goodbye Galaxy’s painstakingly plotted pixel art section-by-section. But, it soon becomes a more perplexing enigma than most will initially expect.
The lines that you create will continue until they hit something, the number present on each block providing an immediate indication as to how long they are supposed to be. Each puzzle must, therefore, be completed in a specific order, with players targeting their efforts as puzzles become increasingly larger through the help of a zoom function.
Players are encouraged to beat each puzzle in the fastest time possible, sharing their best attempts through Miiverse as they contend with others on Nintendo’s online community. Icons on the touchscreen help you to shave milliseconds off the time in allowing quick access to pausing the timer, resetting your attempt and backing out to the puzzle selection menu.
Cleanly presented, the game’s largely pixel art-orientated aesthetic is pleasing on the eye and matched by a soundtrack that provides a gentle backdrop to the gameplay experience.
With 104 puzzles of increasing difficulty awaiting completion, Tappingo 2 proves an undeniable steal at £2.39 (€2.99). Just prepare to unknowingly sink hours into its clever design.
Version Tested: Nintendo 3DS
Review copy provided by CIRCLE Entertainment