Simplistic gameplay and an infinite number of levels make a winning combination
It's hard to get the right mix of gameplay difficulty, simple rules and design in a puzzle game (or any game for that matter), but luckily we've found another that has struck that balance. The game is Mosaique, and it has put all of the components in the right places to make an excellent title. It has a simple design and premise that is easy to pick up but extremely hard to master, and with a gameplay model that gives an effectively infinite number of levels you won't get bored with it.
Mosaique was just released in the Play Store this morning, so hang around with us after the break and see what makes it such an enjoyable gaming experience.
On the surface, Mosaique is an extremely easy game to wrap your head around. With a quick look at a tutorial, you'll easily grasp the main rules to the game. The controls are dead simple, and can be understood just by looking at the above screenshot -- one button to move clockwise, one to move counterclockwise, and one to shoot. The basic premise is that you have a grid of different colored tiles arranged randomly on the screen, and your goal is to get rid of every last one. You do so by shooting the one tile on the perimeter -- which you control -- in at other tiles of the same color. Connecting with tiles of the same color make them disappear, while connecting with any other color swaps places with your current tile. A shot meter between the controls and board displays how many more shots you can take before the game is over. You lower the meter each time you shoot, and raise the meter when clearing two or more tiles of the same color consecutively. Getting to a full meter lets you clear an entire row of tiles, regardless of color.
The entire game is comprised of running through sets of 7 rounds, each getting progressively harder with new tiles and more color options to choose from. At the end of the 7th round, you are given a score and have the option to exit and start over again where you'll be given a completely unique set of 7 more levels. Because the levels are generated algorithmically you should never face the same level twice, which gives Mosaique a unique feel each time. There's no timer or any other metric to measure your success -- just your own high scores from previous rounds. Depending on your skill level you can expect to spend about 10 or 15 minutes each time, which is a good length to keep things casual.
We're not sure if there's an optimal strategy to play, but you quickly start noticing clever ways to manipulate the tiles in your favor. Once you pick up Mosaique and play a few rounds to start forming a strategy, it will be hard to stop playing. The simple yet challenging gameplay is of course wrapped up in an elegant design that is fitting for the type of game. All of the graphics, animations and sounds fit together nicely into a very calming experience while you play. And at just $0.99 in the Play Store for a full version of the game, there's no reason not to give it a look. Those in need of a good brain teasing puzzle game will not be disappointed.