Mosaique is a simple puzzle game for the minimalist in you

By , May 11, 2013

Mosaique 1Puzzle games are a dime a dozen in the App Store. Actually, they are about $11.88 a dozen, if you assume the average price is $0.99. My point is that there are a lot of them and they are basically all the same with slightly different skins. However, every once in a while, a unique twist on a simple game comes along and impresses the world.

Mosaique is one of those apps that transcend traditional puzzle games. With its minimalistic design and innovative gameplay, you’ll be drawn into its relaxed structure and simple design. According to the app’s summary, colonist engineers on the moon of Vraxis play this game, so you are in good company…

Design

This universal app was designed with a minimalist eye. The game board is set against a white background. The squares are subtle shades of orange, yellow, blue, green, and purple. There are three controls, but you could get away with using only two. The virtual buttons have a classic elegance that you wish your iPod controls looked like. There is nothing much to the game. It is simple and clean.

The controls are about as nominal as the look. You can move clockwise or counterclockwise. When you’ve lined up your movable block in the right position, tap the release button in the center.

When you pick up different colored blocks, the border around the controls, as well as the energy meter, change colors to match.

There is a satisfying click sound that is produced as the block moves around the board. When you blast blocks off of the screen, you will hear the sound of a far-off explosion.

What is probably the most prized part of this game is the soundtrack. The app’s co-founder claims that the 10-minute ambient song was created first and the game was added to compliment it. You should be able to complete the entire game before the song is over. It has an energetic feel to it, while still maintaining a calm vibe.

Mosaique 2

App Use

The game’s mechanics are fairly simple. Clear the board by connecting like-colored blocks. When you trigger your block, it will shoot out in a straight line and blast away any blocks that are the same color. If it runs into a different colored block, the two will switch and the movable block becomes a new color.

For example, if there is a row with three blue and two yellow blocks in it and the movable block is blue, launch the blue block into the row to blast away the three matching colored ones. When the block runs into the yellow one, they will switch places. A blue block will remain in the row and a yellow block will return to the moveable position.

Do this in various places on the board to eventually wipe out all of the blocks. There is no time limit and you won’t get stuck if you run out of blocks of a certain color. “What is the strategy, then?” You ask. Well, there isn’t much of one. The game is intended to be a simple brain stimulation without much challenge. To score higher points, destroy multiple blocks in one run. When you destroy groups of the same color, you will increase your energy gauge. If you destroy too many individual blocks instead of groups of colors, you will run out of energy.

There are seven levels per game. Every time you play, the blocks are different. So, you could play 10 games in a row and it will be different every time. However, no matter how good you play, it always ends after seven levels.

You can also switch to Expert mode for an extra challenge. In Expert mode, the blocks are more difficult to match up and there are more of them. You earn more points when you complete each level, but it is more difficult to get through the game.

If you play the game every day for seven days in a row, you will earn additional bonus points. Everyone likes bonus points.

Mosaique 3

The Good

The app looks great and was designed well. The game is unique and offers a minimal amount of challenge so that you can pick up and play a game at any time. You can even put down your device and come back to finish the game later without suffering any consequences. It is easy to figure out, but not the least bit boring.

The Bad

The game is really simple. All you do is remove blocks by matching them up. Granted, Expert mode adds an element of challenge that increases your need to strategize. However, the main game mode is almost too easy.

Value

At $0.99, the app is exactly the right price for games in this genre. Casual puzzle games should not be more than a dollar or two, so this is a typical price range. Although the game seems too easy at times, you can ramp up the difficulty by switching to Expert mode. This will make you feel like you are getting your money’s worth.

Conclusion

Mosaique is a unique and interesting puzzle game that offers a classy, minimalist design and simple gameplay. If you are looking for a pick-up-and-play game that you don’t have to work too hard at, you will be satisfied here. If you want something more challenging, you can always try Expert mode to test your intellect. Fans of simple puzzle games will enjoy this one. You can pick it up in the App Store today.

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  • http://twitter.com/shay6695 Shay Shtern

    tetris?

    • lorygil

      Not even close. Very different game entirely.

  • Javier Martinez

    Because iPhone owners tend to be minimalists?? Yeah right

    • lorygil

      I don’t believe anyone was claiming that iPhone owners tend to be minimalists.

  • Sentry

    Beautiful. Not sure the game is my cup of tea but I can appreciate the effort put into its interface.