• Add Review
  • Subscribe
  • Nominate
  • Submit Media
  • RSS

Better Block Puzzles Than Your RPG

  • Dyhalto
  • 07/11/2016 04:38 AM
I've been in need of a block pushing fix ever since I conquered the Adventures of Lolo series awhile ago. Something to keep my mind moving, and can be... uh... played at work secretly... with one hand.
KiyoKi, coming from the Spanish indie community, is a very suitable candidate.

Visual: 2.5/5
Focusing more attention into the complexity of puzzles than into artistic decoration, KiyoKi became a very bland game to look at. A handful of cuddly critters scuttle about the screen, making cute noises and pushing things twice their size, but overall the graphics just don't have any real heart to them. There's no rhyme or reason behind stage design apart from the discombobulation of blocks in need of arrangement in a certain order.

But I suppose another way of putting it is : There's no clutter. The myriad of block types and their respective rules are clear as day, putting the game's mechanics first and foremost. I have to remember that a simple block pushing puzzle game is all I'm after anyway.

Audio: 5/5
The music is actually pretty catchy, and conducive to deep thought as well. The sound effects, most of them custom if I'm not mistaken, are also delightful.
Not much else to say on this matter. When you've got it, you've got it

Storyline: 2/5
There's some storyline to speak of. A gang of viking'y looking critters have stolen all the 'S' cards, and our brave little 'V' guy has to retrieve them. I don't think knowledge of the Spanish language would aid in plot comprehension here, because there's nothing written apart from the instructions at the beginning of the game.
Speaking of which, I still don't know what pressing the 'S' key does.

Gameplay: 4.5/5
Block mania!
All pushable blocks have some kind of indicator on them. Ones with numbers have a limited number of times they can be pushed, arrowed ones can only be moved in their respective directions, ice blocks slide until they hit something, and so forth. Very simple to understand, yet very difficult to master. Perfect!

In addition to collecting the five 'S' cards per board needed to win, each stage has a secret gem tucked somewhere, and damn are some of them hard to find. While a few are obvious enough, like pushing the Key block onto the Lock tile, many of them are completely hidden and require the player to stand back and stare at the level, looking for patterns that might be a single block away from completion, or peculiarities like a lone out-of-place block.

Ah, so that's what I had to do.

I wish quitting/dying didn't eject me to the title screen though. Would it have been so hard to implement a "Retry/Main Menu" prompt?

Overall: 3.5/5
KiyoKi's puzzles are above and beyond the simple puzzles you'll find in RPGs. It's a real mind bender, certainly fulfilling of one's craving for mental exertion.

♫ ♫ I am so smart ♫ ♫