Critical Mass PC Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 8.0
Graphics 7.0
Sound 7.0
Value 8.0
Developer: Manic Game Studios
Review Date:
June 2011
Reviewer:
Brooke Robinson
Classification: G

8.0


Critical Mass

Developed by Australia's very own Manic Game Studios, their new game Critical Mass will be the next big casual PC game. If you thought that Peggle or Bejewelled was addictive, wait until you play Critical Mass which is the love child of Tetris meets the Rubik Cube.

At it's core, Critical Mass is a traditional coloured based puzzle block game which requires the player to match four colours in order to prevent the 3D cube from reaching critical mass. Imagine a 3D Rubik Cube rotating on your screen and by matching four colours together like blue, it will make the cube smaller. If you fail or put the colour on the wrong part of the cube, it will grow.

Each cube that you get to launch is a different colour but by left clicking on your mouse, you can rotate the cube in order to find the best fit for that colour. By pressing the right button on the mouse, this launches the cube. The more mistakes you make, the closer the cube gets to the player and eventually it will reach critical mass and it's game over. Then you have timers, multipliers, high scores and the like and you really start buzzing. What a mind mess... yet enjoyable!

Critical Mass features four different modes of play that include Classic, Survival, Meditation and Rush. Classic is your traditional level based mode which requires the player to remove all blocks from the screen. Once all the blocks are gone, you will then proceed to the next level. Survival is a little different because it supports multiple stages but with a timer. Needless to say, working with the cube and the timer does cause some good old fashioned gamer grief.

Meditation on the other removes the sense of urgency from the gameplay and allows the player to build the biggest cubes possible. It's definitely less intensive but still a treat to play. Lastly, we have Rush which requires you to prevent critical mass but unfortunately, it's a fast paced mode which uses both the timer and the score. The timer counts up, whereas the score counts down. Deliciously addictive!

Graphically, Critical Mass is very simplistic but looks great on our 1080p widescreen monitor. The frame rate of the cube moving is flawless which matches the high definition colours well. The game does have this "space" theme behind it and fortunately the music is quite relaxing. Add in a variety of sound effects and the graphics, sound and gameplay meld into something truly unique and fun to play.

Although there is no multiplayer mode, the game does support an online ranking system and an achievements area to see what you have unlocked. I also like how the game displays your personal best as well. With all this evidence, Critical Mass is a fun and very addictive game that is not only very frustrating but quite rewarding, especially when your cube grows expansionary and somehow you manage to prevent it from reaching critical match by getting into the "zone" and matching all your colours. The game is currently available for PC only via Steam, however a Mac version is in the works and hopefully an iPad version as well!

Conclusion

In the end, I really enjoyed playing Critical Mass and I'll be playing this for quite some time, especially the meditation mode and survival. If you still don't believe us, check out the official webpage at http://criticalmassgame.com/ and download the demo! What a game! Critical Mass is set to be available from the 20th of June 2011.






 
 



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