iPhone App Review: Disney Puzzle Slider
Title: Disney Puzzle Slider (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 14, 2009
Pros: Dozens of amazing Disney oriented wallpapers
Cons: Controls are overly sensitive, music loop can’t be turned off
Review: Under the guise of a puzzle slider game, Disney Puzzle Slider is above all else your ticket to 74 of some really great Disney pieces of art spread across 11 categories – Mickey and Friends, Pooh and Pals, Fairies, Bloc28, Disney Villains, Pirates, Simply Mickey, Disney Stylized, Cuties, Classic Mickey and Minnie Mouse and Classic Disney Friends.
At first glance, it looks like one of those traditional puzzle sliders where there’s a piece of the puzzle missing and you just slide tiles one by one until you complete the puzzle. Awesome I think because I know a technique that helps me solve those puzzles easily. However the game has one slight twist – you aren’t moving one tile at a time, you’re moving an entire row or column at a time. It’s essentially a 2-dimensional Rubik’s cube. The premise is fairly simple: choose your puzzle, solve it, earn points and use those points to unlock further images. Each time you solve a puzzle, you have the option to save the image into your photo library.
There are varying degrees of difficulty which are mostly based on the number of tiles in the puzzle. The easiest (and I do mean easy) is 2×2, which you can solve in well under three seconds once you’re familiar with the puzzle. However, difficulty is greatly increased simply by moving to a 3×3 puzzle. Additional degrees of difficulty include a 4×4, 5×5, a 5×5 with one large block and a 5×5 with a ‘hidden’ block. According to the game, the greater the difficulty, the more points you can accumulate by solving it, but when comparing playing a 2×2 in rapid succession versus solving a 3×3, I didn’t really see the benefit of playing the more difficult levels if your aim is to unlock images. Working with 2x2s, I am able to consistently earn over 300 points per minute. However if you’re looking for an actual challenge when it comes to solving puzzles, you definitely can get more than you bargain for too. As a hint, the Mickey head in the lower right hand corner during game play will show you the completed puzzle when you press it, so you know what you’re trying to match.
The one thing I haven’t been crazy about is the controls. You slide the column/row by sliding your finger in the direction you want it to go. The problem is that the controls seem to be overly sensitive and it’s really more of a quick flick of the finger if you want to move the row/column by just one square. Repeatedly playing 2x2s, this became slightly annoying and I can imagine it would be even more so when playing a single 5×5.
Bottom line: If the price tag doesn’t scare you, it’s worth getting just to unlock all the puzzles at the 2×2 level and add the images to your collection. As far as a logic game is concerned, it does provide a challenge, but I have to imagine there are other logic oriented games out there that you might want to direct your wallet towards.