Another day, another ESRB rating. Word Puzzle comes in at E for Everyone. Cue the painfully long waiting period before the game actually releases.
Impressions of the game from X07 in Toronto.
[via the ESRB]
For the second consecutive year, XBLArcade was invited to the X'0? event in Toronto (thanks to Chris and Jade), and for the second year I took them up on the offer to try out some unreleased XBLA titles. Over the next couple of days, you can expect my impressions of Geon: Emotions, N+, Word Puzzle, Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords, Undertow, and Speedball 2: Brutal Deluxe.
Despite some games falling short of my expectations (aka not worth buying IMO), there is tons to look forward to from XBLA this year.
First up, Word Puzzle.
When I started the game, I wondered how this game could possibly distinguish itself over the Word Search Puzzles at the dollar store. Unfortunately I still didn't discover the answer as I played through the single player version.
The game plays exactly as you would expect, you search for a word and select it (Imagine that). The controls aren't all that hot either (although to be completely fair this game is not finished and hopefully this issue will be fixed by launch). When you get going faster and start finding multiple words in a row, or in multiplayer (more about that later) the line that you draw to specify a word tends to follow the thumbstick movements for a split second after you let go of the trigger, meaning that you have to slow down in order to make sure the game registers the correct word. Graphics on the other hand are pretty much what you'd expect from a word based puzzle game.
As I was about to switch to a different game, the Microsoft Rep came by to see if I wanted to give multiplayer a go. Boy am I glad he did. This game is actually quite fun against someone else if for no other reason than because of its simplicity. With such simple controls, the game boils down to the speed at which you can find words. To increase the competitiveness of the game, InterServ has both gamers playing on the same screen at the same time. Thus if you notice your opponent screw up a word, you can, if you're quick enough, steal the word from them. What this boils down to is that the game lets you reach your competitive best (or is that worst?).
At the end of the day, this game is certainly not on the top of my buy list. However, if they can fix the controls and release it at 400 points, then I'm sure it will find a decent size following of people who are just too competitive for their own good, me included.