5 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Super Puyo Puyo 2 Review


This is definitely an interesting SNES online game because it wasn’t translated. The game is still in Japanese from the controls to the cutscenes. While this does mean it’ll be impossible to follow the story unless you learned some Japanese, at least the game came at all. Better to arrive like that than to never arrive right? I like Tetris gameplay a lot and while I realize Puyo is quite a bit different I thought my skills would transfer over. Unfortunately that was not the case and I kept getting wrecked on the second level. There must be some gameplay mechanics I am not aware of because this did not feel legit.

When you boot up the game there are quite a few modes. You’ve got speed run, options, and the main one. There were two others that I did not click on. Naturally I ran to the main mode and did not look back. I was able to consistently beat the first guy with my quick combos. The problem was always the second level. So the goal of the game is to match 4 bubbles of one color. As long as the bubbles connect in any form then you just need to get the 4. It doesn’t have to be a complete line like Tetris. As you get more and more combos you will be sending bubbles to the opponent’s side. Once someone’s screen fills up with bubbles that person is defeated. You can get rid of these bubbles by making matches so it will come down to speed….seemingly.

The issue here is that I only ever seem to send over a few bubbles to my opponent while he is suddenly able to send an army at me. I’m assuming it’s because he either lands some kind of combo or manages to match 5-6 at a time. I tried both options but even then he would take the win. It would happen pretty suddenly too as I would have a huge lead and it would all go away in an instant. It definitely didn’t feel very legit, but I’m sure one day I would get the hang of it. That day was not in time for the review though so I was left spinning my wheels for a bunch of rounds before I eventually turned in the towel.

I think the craziest part here is that this was technically still just level 2 of Easy mode. It makes you wonder what normal and advanced levels of difficulty look like. The game really expects you to be a master at this point and I suppose this is the second game in the Super series so maybe that’s a fair expectation. I did try one round of the speed run part, but I died pretty quick. That seems like it would be a good way to hone your skills and level up though. Eventually you could land the pieces without any real effort. That being said, the toughest part about going at a high speed is that it’s easy for the control stick to move to the left or right and then you’ll have quickly gotten yourself into a big hole. Once you’ve messed up a piece making a comeback is even more impossible.

I suppose the gameplay wouldn’t change much from level to level so I still got most of the experience. The most interesting part of the game was definitely the plot and it’s not like I could actually follow that part. The animations were very expressive and it looked like it had a pretty colorful story. The graphics have aged incredibly well for its time and I’d be game for a newer Puyo Puyo game coming to America someday. I’d buy an HD collection for that. The soundtrack is less noticeable, I can’t really recall any of the tunes to be honest. That’s something it’ll need to work to improve since the music in Tetris 99 is downright excellent!

Overall, Super Puyo Puyo 2 is one of those games with a lot of promise. I like the fact that it has an actual story. It looks like an RPG and the colorful characters really help to make this game stand out from the pack. I suspect that is part of what helped make it so popular along with the gameplay. The gameplay didn’t really click for me but I’m thinking that’s partially because you’re just thrown into the action. If you’re more familiar with the gameplay and know how to really put up a fight then I expect you’ll really like this game. Try to learn some Japanese while you’re at it and then you’ll even have bragging rights when your friends come over to play.

Overall 5/10

7 Star Games, App Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Lollipop Review


Time to look at the first connect 4 app title I’ve ever played. It’s pretty impressive how much the genre has exploded. There are hundreds of apps on the market just like these. Candy Crush is really what started this segment of the market and it has since grown into something pretty impressive. It is definitely a really fun genre but just playing one or two of them is enough for you to have your fill. Taking on more would just be overwhelming. For me Lollipop was the first and also the best.

You probably already remember the gameplay from my Fruits Mania review so I shall be brief. The goal of the game is typically to match a lot of candy. You can do this in pairs of 3 or greater. The longer the match, the better the reward. A match of 5 will get you the rainbow orb which can destroy all candy of a single color which is extremely handy. Other levels have you trying to match near cookies or getting a cake from the top to the bottom. There are certainly quite a few variations for the levels. I’d say that the best kind is when you have to break a large number of crackers. Those are just the most satisfying to play. You still need strategy but you can just jump in and start marching.

The worst levels are the ones that pop up really late in the game where there will be prisons outside the level and the only way to hit them is to detonate a row bomb in just the right row. It just feels like you need a lot of luck to clear a level like this and the game is basically just telling you to buy the item that you want. This is the kind of game that is definitely pay to win as buying an item like this will really come in handy.

The main game mode is the only mode in the game as you would expect. The replay value is in the sheer number of levels that are included as getting through all 1000+ will be considerably tough. Not to mention that the game is still going as well. You’ll burn out if you try to go through them too quickly so it’s important to just go through a few at a time. Naturally if you are a huge fan and don’t think this will happen to you then you should go ahead and play to your heart’s content.

There isn’t much to say about the graphics or the soundtrack since it is all the most generic themes you can think of. They certainly feel like they are all free domain themes and there isn’t any real variety. It would be nice to have something more than that, but it isn’t entirely unexpected considering that this is a pretty low budget game anyway. The company must have a huge profit margin here because they have 10 games of more that are exactly the same as the others, only they are slightly altered visually. A unique mechanic here or there, but it’s likely not hard to maintain compared to other games. I do think the game looks a lot better than Fruits Mania though because of the color scheme. Blue just pops out and the island esque theme just looks more impressive. It’s definitely quite subjective though.

The app market has really taken off and after laying some of these games I can see why. They certainly are no replacement for console games and if given the option I would choose the latter every time. However, it’s the times where a console game isn’t available that these really shine. Since the levels are quick it is ready to be played at any time. The levels are quite fun as well so it will always remain a tempting option. I could easily see a more dedicated app player beating all of the levels and moving on to one of the other versions just to get more levels.

Naturally as this is a very mainstream app game there are a bunch of pay to win mechanics. You can buy whatever items you want with real world currency. They are fairly cheap but once you’ve bought enough the total will definitely start to spike. Any level can become a cake walk if you buy enough items. It’s one thing Pokémon Go has always done well. You can’t buy candy, stardust, exp, or Pokémon. Without the option to do those things, it effectively prevents the P2W strategy. You will still have an edge if you spend money but it’s not quite as immediate or obvious as in other games. Sonic Forces is unfortunately like this one in that regard as you can just keep buying more loot boxes until you are maxed out with your level.

Overall, your enjoyment of Lollipop will likely depend on how many of the other clones you’ve already played. If this is your first one, then that’s perfect. It will feel really fresh and you’ll be absolutely engaged with the game. If you’ve played others, then this will just seem like more of the same. There aren’t any bells and whistles here. It’s just the gameplay, take it or leave it. At the very least, I know it’s an app that I can easily use to pass the time by, but more often than not, I have other options for that.

Overall 7/10

7 Star Games, App Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Fruits Mania: Elly’s Travel Review


It’s been a while since I last reviewed a mobile game. This time it’s one that isn’t a franchise title so you may be wondering why I picked it up. Well, the game was recommended by a few colleagues and so I quickly made it my mission to get reasonably far in it. After completing over 150 levels, I can definitely say that I have achieved my goal. I actually started this one after Lollipop so I will make some references to it but that review will be coming after this one.

The gameplay is very basic but there are a few advanced rules that you have to find out on your own as the game keeps them from you. The objective of each level varies but typically you have to destroy a certain amount of blocks in various colors or the crackers underneath them. Sometimes you will have to escort candy to the bottom of the level. You do all of this by matching colors in groups of 3 or greater. Groups of 4 will allow you to destroy a whole row or column while 5 will let you destroy a whole color on the board. Use these combos strategically in order to clear the level. Luck does play a large role in this game, but there is still the skill aspect as well. You can’t just blindly blow up blocks and expect to win. Some advanced techniques you can do are to merge explosion blocks or any kind of special block really for intense results. Hit a line block with a rainbow and it will cause a very large chain reaction. This resulting explosion can really change the landscape of the entire level and grant you a swift victory. Of course, it is incredibly difficult to accomplish such a feat.

There is nothing else to do here except the main levels so you really have to enjoy the gameplay if you want to keep playing. There are over 1000 levels though so you don’t really need to worry about running out for a very long time. I don’t care how good you are at this game, clearing it will take time. I’m fairly close to level 200 but the game is getting to be quite difficult now so my pace has slowed considerably. You do get special items every now and then, but it seems to be based on your play time so it doesn’t come as frequently as in Lollipop. Use your items wisely as you will certainly miss them once they are gone.

One thing that is unique to Fruits Mania over Lollipop is that it has actual boss fights. You attack them with your blocks. It’s really just like a normal level, but don’t underestimate it. The toughest levels are still when you have to escort fruits to the bottom of the screen as you have to either plan out your moves and their effects to a very high degree or just depend on RNG.

There isn’t really a soundtrack of course. There are some decent sound effects, but that’s really it. As far as the graphics go, it’s nice and clear. The art style isn’t bad, but I wouldn’t give it much praise since it’s not like it has much to do anyway. It’s just the same fruits in each level so I doubt it takes too much time to set it up. The game is a brilliant idea from the developers because they can just keep on generating new levels which are just the old ones, but switched out a little. It’s most impressive if you ask me. From the gamer side you won’t even mind this much because the core gameplay is what’s fun. It’s not like there is a whole lot more they can do with the game without possibly damaging the formula. They do add new mechanics from time to time, but they have to be careful not to overdo it.

The replay value goes without saying here since 1000+ levels will take forever. Each world has 50 levels and I’m only on World 4 I believe. This app succeeds in what apps are intended to do, make the time pass by quickly. It doesn’t need the internet so you can play the game while in the subway and if you’re stuck in a level you don’t have to worry as the game will give you powerful items before you know it. The best items are the capsules that take out whole rows and columns. They are just so overpowered. .

Overall, Fruits Mania is certainly an addicting mobile title. It’s a step under Lollipop but that could very well be because I played the other game first. As the levels are quick it is easy to pick up and play at any time. I doubt I’ll ever complete all of the levels, but it’s a fun game. I’d recommend checking this out if it’s up your alley but if you already have a game that you like to go too in this category, then there isn’t much point to switching.

Overall 7/10