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Friday, April 3, 2009

Civiballs - Game of the Day

Civiballs, by developer Kunal Joshi, is a very colorful physics-based puzzle game where your objective is to knock different colored balls into their corresponding vases. It’s a simple concept taken to mind-bending extremes that will test your brains as well as your reflexes.

You’ll begin by selecting a level from one of three different areas: Greece, Egypt or China. (Don’t ask.) Each of these areas is comprised of 10 different puzzles. You can jump between areas at any time, and completing all 30 puzzles unlocks a final stage.

Gameplay consists of cutting different chains and ropes to swing, launch, and drop the smiling balls so that they land in urns of their corresponding color. The overall effect is sort of an action-oriented Rube Goldberg machine. Some puzzles require you to make action-oriented clicks once you’ve set things in motion, which means that your timing can be as important as knowing what to do next. On a positive note, it’s pretty rewarding when you finally complete a difficult level.

The game sports some very polished visuals, and welcomes you in with a pleasing visual style. The “civiballs” even have some personality, but don’t let the cute, bespectacled little Gobstopper-lookalikes fool you – some of the puzzles can be excruciatingly difficult. It’ll help to think things through a little before you start clicking, but the intricacy of some of the puzzles means that some trial-and-error will likely be necessary.

Overall, Civiballs is an enjoyable and somewhat tricky puzzle game with good production values. There’s not much replay value once you’ve completed a puzzle, but there’s enough content to keep you flinging manic gumballs around your screen for a while.

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