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180 Review - iPhone / iPad

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Just when you think you have seen all the variations of match-3 puzzle games another one pops up. While many are dead on copies of Bejeweled there are a few that can stand on their own, integrating enough unique game elements that separate it from the dozens of me-too clones. 180 for the iPhone/iPad is one of these great examples of a developer taking the tried-and-true gaming elements of many of the great puzzle games of our time including Tetris, Puzzle Bobble and Bejeweled and wrapping them all up in a new, fresh, original package that works remarkably well.



So what is this new game play element and how does it make this puzzle different from all the others vying for your time and money? Headcase Games has created a very simple, ingenious game play element that I have not seen anywhere else, two sided coins and the ability to flip any coin 180 degrees exposing the color on the opposite side. Players are faced with rows of colored, two sided coins slowly moving down from the top of the playfield. The goal is to simply keep the coins from reaching the bottom of the playfield and thus ending your game.

To keep the falling coins at bay, the player releases a coin from the bottom of the playfield simply by touching an empty lane and sending the coin skyward in hopes of it connecting with at least two more of the same color either vertically or horizontally, and causing the coins to disappear, which send all lower most coins back up to the top, filling in the now empty spaces. All other coins touching and matching the color of the (at least) three vertically or horizontally lined up coins will all disappear as well, leading the way for big chunks of coins to disappear all at once and sending all floating coins to bump and grind together, which can cause additional chains of disappearing like-colored coins. As I mentioned before, all coins on the play field are two sided and flipping either the "send off" coin and/or the target coins 180 degrees to expose matching colors is key to chaining combos, scoring mad points and staying alive in 180. And similar to Tetris, players have the ability to see their next play piece so they can plan a couple steps ahead to try for the most profitable move.



180 features easy & hard options as well as Endless game play mode (how long will you survive), Score Attack mode (score as many points as you can in 90 seconds) and Drop Attack mode. To egg you on during your game play, ala the Snake in one of my favorite Dreamcast games, Sega Swirl, are four on screen player icons ranging from Star the Chick, Rex the Rocker, to Ozzie the Alien and Kane the Tribal Leader. Their animations change depending on how good or bad you are doing. And in case you are color blind the developers have conveniently added symbols to the coin faces so you will also be able to enjoy 180.

Sounds in 180 are nicely implemented and thankfully do not include any annoying, repeating theme tune. Very relaxing background tones are balanced nicely with the chimes of a successful match and the perfectly sounding bubble popping sounds as matched coins blink and pop away off the play field.



So, if by now you can't tell my opinions of this game, then I will flat ass tell you this is one of the best original takes on puzzle games in a long time. You can pick this gem up in the iPhone Ap Store for only $.99 or try it out with the "free" version. Either way, I am sure you will agree that 180 is a puzzle game worthy of your time and money. Get It Now!

180 In the iTunes Ap Store:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/180/id336287504?mt=8

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So Cal Mike
GameGavel.com Writer

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Comments

  1. SteveSawyer's Avatar
    This game is sooooooooooo addicting! And this review is spot on, get this game now!

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