If you like games that make you think, Super Collapse 3 will deliver. My overall impression is that it was a rushed release that is missing detailed graphics, but read on and see the challenges that this unique game has to offer.
First and most notably for the readers of the world, you will need the ability to transcribe French if you want to read the owner's manual for Super Collapse 3. I was very disappointed that an American release of this game would have such poor quality control.
Super Collapse 3 for the Nintendo DS is a simple puzzle game where you tap on groups of colored blocks to make them disappear. Any 3 like colored blocks touching each other can be removed by simply touching one of their group. In most modes, you beat a level by preventing the blocks from filling the screen. A special quest mode in Super Collapse 3 allows you to explore different areas in the Collapse world, each with unique levels to conquer. The game does offer a quick play mode that has 7 different game options, but you must play the quest mode to unlock most of them.
The game also has eight special types of colored blocks that make gameplay a little more interesting: Color Bombs, Super Bomb, Row Bomb, Hourglass, Row-Column Bomb, Scrambler, Gravity Bomb and Blocker Block. Color Bombs remove all blocks of the same color from the screen, as well as the Super Bombs. The Super Bomb blows up surrounding blocks which can help you clear up sections of the pile that have no combinations. Row Bomb removes all blocks in the same row. Hourglass stops new blocks from coming in for a short period of time. Unlike Tetris, new blocks usually come in from below the pile as complete mismatched rows. The Row-Column Bomb removes all blocks in the same row and all the blocks in the same column. Scrambler rearranges all the blocks on the screen. Gravity Bomb used only in Relapse mode, moves all the blocks from one end of the screen to the other. Blocker Block blocks you from making color combinations.
The instruction manual that came with my copy of the game was 25 pages long and was filled with illustrations about how to play the game. Unfortunately, the manual was printed in French and has nothing in English in it. In a perfect world, you could just return the game if it does not have an English manual but I think all North American copies of this game are like this.
The game uses a touch screen interface exclusively. You will not be able to use the cursor or buttons to manage the blocks during the game.
The game's graphics are blocky, sprite based, 2D dimensional tiles. You do not notice it so much while playing the game but it is very evident in the main menu. The designers use bright pastel colors to help you distinguish the pieces. Yet they just do not fit together real well from a critic's point of view.
A stark contrast to the graphics in this game is the game Meteos for the Nintendo DS. The game has animated sprites and has moving backgrounds while playing with puzzles.
The main menus in the game have no background music so that certain feeling of excitement is missing when you start this game. The in-game sound effects are rather plain; a crash here and there with a few high pitched noises. While playing the game a short loop of low quality background music quickly becomes tiring, I play this game with no sound for this reason.
Since I have seen Tetris in many combinations, Super Collapse 3 seems like a remake with quest mode to keep things interesting. The game lost its appeal within a few minutes because the graphics are really quite plain and look like they were thrown together. You can find a used copy of this game on Amazon for $13.55 right now but their suggested retail price of $18.49 is a little high in my opinion.
If you are interested in games like this, you should really try Meteos for the Nintendo DS. Another interesting thinking game is Geometry Wars Galaxies for the fast paced arcade shooting and rich graphics it provides.
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