- Unique take on an established genre
- Nice presentation
- Fun Multiplayer
No online leaderboards
Falling block puzzles come in many shapes and sizes. Most of them fall into the match 3 category where you’re simply trying to get the highest score possible by making combinations of three or more colored blocks. Magnetis is another falling block puzzle game, but instead of matching colors you are trying to make chains of blocks that will disappear by connecting magnets together.
The game starts out simply enough. You’re given a menu where you can choose to play single player, multiplayer or adjust some options. In the options menus you have a few different things you can do, but the most important there is to determine your control scheme. You can decide whether you want to hold the Wii Remote like you would a television controller or sideways like and NES controller. All your main controls will be mapped to the D-pad because you’re just simply moving a conveyor belt left or right and accessing menus with the 1 & 2 buttons.
In the single player game you have the ability to play arcade style, timed, or block attack. The arcade mode is the main mode where you are simply playing to obtain the highest score possible before you cannot make any moves. This is achieved by connecting two magnets together that face each other. It’s a simple enough concept, but you’re also trying to obtain the highest score possible and you do this by putting blank blocks in between the two magnets to achieve bonuses. The more blocks between the two magnets, the more points you get. You do not have direct control over the falling blocks like you do in games like Tetris, but rather you control a conveyor belt at the bottom of the screen and you move this left and right to position previously placed blocks. As you get higher in levels you’ll also start seeing differently colored blocks. You have to connect two blocks together that are the same color. If you try to connect different colored blocks together they will penalize you by turning the blocks into immovable barriers. These can only be removed by removing adjacent blocks from them that will then cause the immovable blocks to be destroyed.
The timed mode has you attempting to get the highest score possible in 165 seconds. It’s a good mode to use if you’re short on time, but want a few minutes of good puzzle play. The last single player mode, Block Attack, gives you a number of blocks, around 100, which you need to remove, but be careful, you can still stack blocks too high and the game will end prematurely.
Multiplayer is also a lot of fun. You can have up to four people playing at the same time. It’s similar to the main single player mode in that you’re trying to obtain the highest score possible. Like many other puzzle games though you’re also trying to set up combos that will throw junk over to an opponent making it harder for them to progress. If you’re not in the mood for a bit of competition you can always try out the co-operative mode. In this mode you and a friend take turns placing blocks. Its great fun and you’ll really have to be in sync with each other to be successful.
Magnetis is a unique take on the falling block puzzle genre and it’s definitely one that you should check out. It’s got a great presentation. Visually it’s quite nice to look at. The background factory, while not very busy does look nice and the colors complement each other quite nicely. There’s not a lot bad that can be said about a puzzle game that’s this fun. With puzzle games online leaderboards are a nice addition to see how you compare to friends, but the lack of them doesn’t detract from this game in any way. This is a great addition to Nintendo’s WiiWare lineup and I really think you should check it out.
Final Score: 4/5 Above Average
Review copy of the game provided by Yullaby.