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If there's one thing Android isn't hurting for, it's puzzle games. Knowing that, I wouldn't be putting another puzzle game in front of you if it wasn't good. Great, even. And if there's one thing Quell Reflect is, it's a great puzzle game.

First thing, let's talk about Quell Reflect's aesthetic. When you're not in a game, the environment has this very old school, rustic look to it. Levels come in groups of four, and when you're on the level select screen, you'll notice that each batch of puzzles is assigned a year in the past, long, long ago. You're in what looks like a dank, stone basement, and there's vintage propaganda posters on the walls.

I'm not sure what it is, but I love it. It's unique and it definitely gives even something as simple as selecting a level a much cooler vibe.

In Quell Reflect, you're trying to fling a bubble around a world filled with obstacles, and collect pearls along the way. You advance to the next level once you've collected all the pearls, but the caveat is that once you've flung the bubble, the bubble is in motion until an outside force acts upon it (or, in layman's terms, it runs into a wall).

Your goal is to collect all of the pearls in the least number of moves possible. The game gives you an idea of what that number is each level, in the top-left corner of the screen. If you manage to complete a level in that number of moves, you're awarded a hint token. Having never used a hint token, I can't be certain what they do, but if I had to guess, I'd say they give you a hint​ on where to fling your bubble.

I absolutely am in love with this game. The beginning levels are fairly straightforward, but new mechanics are quickly added in, like the side of the screen with no border. If there's no stones to stop the bubble, it flings off the edge of the screen and comes out on the opposite side, a la Pacman-in-the-tunnel. Soon after, spikes are introduced, and after that, stones that need to be pushed together in order to make them disappear.

From the moment you start playing, you'll be taken with how much detail has been put into this game. The soundtrack isn't a slouch, either. The music is both tranquil and ambient, almost in the vein of Osmos HD. It's beautiful, and if you've got the battery for it, I don't think anyone would ridicule you for leaving the game open just to have pretty music going in the background.

What else is there to say? This is a beautiful, polished, intriguing game. It'll have you scratching your head as you try to uncover the most efficient way to win a level and then quickly lull you back into serenity with it's pleasant interface and calming music. Truly, Quell Reflect is the real deal.

Quell Reflect is 99 cents in the Google Play Store. We've got download links after the break.


Reader comments

Quell Reflect [Android Game Review]


It's a review, you less-than-excellent reviewer. Use a bloody hint and tell people what it does, instead of your "Having never used a hint token, I'm not sure what they do" ego-garbage. When you review a drawing app, do you skip the paintbrush tool, since "I've only ever used the pen, but if I had to guess, I'd say the paintbrush icon would let you use some sort of brush"?

If you just want to post how good you are at a game, go find a forum. If you want to review any application, it's your responsibility to review the options, not just the parts you're interested in.

Wow, man. Calm down. I understand your point. It would have been a more thorough review if he had figured out and stated what the hint tokens were for. But instead of berating him, why don't you offer you opinion with some constructive criticism. Something like ... "Thanks for the review. The game looks pretty cool and I'm gonna check it out. But I do wish that you could have been able to explain what the hint tokens are for, because that seems like it could be a pretty useful aspect of the game."

I also bought this in an instant during the Play sale. Very much worth it. I just spent, I dunno, 15 enjoyably frustrating minutes solving the 1972 2.4 puzzle in the minimum 14 moves. Let me explain. You can solve the puzzles and move forward ... or you can really exercise the grey cells by determining how to solve the puzzle in the least number of moves. When you do so, you get "coins" with which you can buy hints. So each puzzle has two enjoyment levels, the first just figuring it out, the second learning how to finesse it.

The hints, since someone was wondering, are directions for solving the puzzle. (FYI, the hints do not seem to reappear once you've moved on to the next puzzle.) In the puzzle you hit the "||" pause button, and click "Hint." You're told how many coins a hint costs, and buy it, or not. A bonus is that when you solve the puzzle following the directions, you may get another coin, so of the 2 or 3 coins you expend on "buying" the hint, you get one back.

The gentle Windham Hill knockoff guitar music doesn't suit me (of course, music and sound FX volumes are adjustable), but no matter, the sounds of the game and the really well rendered graphics (on my HTC Amaze) are delightful. Like Osmos HD, this is a game to relax with, not get hyper. I might even buy the first game.

BTW, the background images are supposedly inspired by a storyboard the developers used to grow the idea, but the story isn't included. Maybe it is if you can decipher things; otherwise, it's just nice window dressing so you're not looking at a bland screen.

I give it 5 stars.

Love this game - the graphics, the music and of course, the challenge. Very polished, it even uses turns my on screen buttons into dots, which shows how much detail the developer has paid attention to.
Bought it at the lowest price during the sale (HK$2). Best puzzle game ever.