Friday, November 18, 2005


Name: Paradoxion
Author: VSBgames
License: commercial

It is not that often that I run across a game with an original idea. Here is one with some interesting puzzle mechanics. The goal of each Paradoxion level is to eliminate all the items on the board. When items of the same type form an appropriate configuration, they explode, disappear, and push neighboring items one space. These pushed items can then form a new exploding configuration. This can set off a long chain reaction which clears the board or at least a significant portion of it. There is a supply of items on the right which you get to place on the board to get things going.

The round orbs will go off if enough of them form a row. Diamonds explode if they form a two-by-two or larger rectangle. There are several other items: blastoids, paradoxes, shifters, teleports, and disintegrators. Each has simple rules for how it explodes, eliminates items, and pushes other ones around.

This results in some interesting puzzles. Solving a level requires careful planning and keeping track of the motion of the items as they get pushed about by the explosions.

Paradoxion comes with 90 levels. They slowly introduce the various game items. The first 30 levels are tutorial in nature. After that the levels quickly get quite difficult. I enjoyed the challenge of the difficult levels, but I wish there had been some middle difficulty levels. One interesting feature is that many levels are symmetric. Symmetry significantly reduces the difficulty of a level.

Each level comes with a hint. I would suggest you turn these off. They often give away too much. You can use them when you get suck. If you really get suck, solutions to each level are available online. You can play any level at anytime, and the game keeps track of which levels you have completed. One minor flaw in the game is that the "next level" feature does not skip over completed levels.

A level editor is included. Some user made levels are available. Another minor flaw is that progress on user made levels is not recorded.

Paradoxion has high production qualities. There are no major bugs or rough edges. The artwork and audio are professionally done. This is just what you expect from a commercial game. But at $25, it is a little pricey.


Post a Comment

<< Home