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For:   Also on: iPhoneiPad
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Shoot first, do calculus later

Product: Current | Developer: TinkerHouse Games | Publisher: TinkerHouse Games | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action, Puzzle | Players: 1 | File size: 17.5MB | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0
Current iPhone, thumbnail 1
Like a self-made recipe consisting entirely of your favourite types of food, Current is packed with ingredients that should produce a stunning meal, but ends up being a little too overwhelming for the tastebuds.

Resembling a cross between Bust-A-Move, an all-night rave, and an infectious diesease, it’s a game that requires speed, precision, and two brains to prevail.

The infection is spreading

Gameplay revolves around tapping a coloured ‘Hexog’ from the board and firing it back into a bunched up group of the same colour.

Every matching Hexog in a hexagonal shape around the area you strike is then removed from the board, with the ultimate goal for each level to remove everything before your shot counter (set at twenty-five) hits zero.

To complicate matters, the little Hexogs regularly start pulsing in time with the soundtrack before suddenly duplicating out across a pre-shown area.

Different coloured hexes duplicate in different ways, with some of the latter critters even going so far as to trigger everything around them to duplicate while they leap from one side of the board to the other.

Beat down

Adding to the strategic element in the game is the fact that bouncing the shots off the sides adds a multiplier to the resulting score, while smashing a pulsing Hexog before it duplicates results in highly rewarding chain explosions.

Later stages introduce special weapons, such as the timed, duplication-triggered bomb, or the friendly-sounding ‘Infect’ which make things a whole lot more frenetic and hard to keep tabs on.

Despite the mass of concepts you’ll need to get your head around, Current does a good job of relaying the basics and keeping the controls simple.

Holding down your finger on the screen, for instance, brings up the familiar guidelines showing where the shot will go (initially, at least), while tapping in the general direction of the Hexog you want to take usually suffices.

Drop the pressure

These simple controls are a blessing, because anything more complicated and Current is likely to make your brain melt.

The pace the creatures duplicate, for instance, is extremely fast - often faster than it takes for your shots to travel up to their locations, which makes planning chain bonuses all but pointless.

Special moves alleviate some of the pressure, but they also add another layer for you to get your head around on top of the confusion breaking out on the screen.

You’ll plough through the levels, with the excellent music and presentation pushing you forward, but it will feel like you’re missing half of what the game is about thanks to the overwhelming number of factors in play at any one time.

Fewer ingredients would have made Current a dish worth savouring, but in the end it still offers a decent snack.
Reviewer photo
Will Wilson | 30 May 2011
A little overwhelming, but very slick to play, Current will have its fans, but the majority of players will be left bewildered
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