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Salt & Pepper

For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

Lacking depth of flavour

Product: Salt & Pepper: A Physics Game | Developer: Appdore | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action, Puzzle | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0
Salt & Pepper: A Physics Game iPhone, thumbnail 1
The most important element of cooking is the seasoning.

You can make even the most mediocre set of ingredients taste great with the right proportions of salt and pepper, and even the best grub in the world can taste bland without a little sprinkle.

A game named after these bedrocks of the kitchen had better be damned tasty, and true to its name, Salt & Pepper has a familiar flavour.

The core premise of sketching out a path to guide falling objects to an exit point is one of the oldest on the App Store.

Crayon Physics Deluxe and Graffiti Ball are just a couple that spring to mind.

Here you're guiding two sorts of condiment, salt and pepper, to the appropriate collection bowls.

At first these flavourings rain down from the top of the screen, meaning gravity does much of the work for you - all you need to do is to draw a little object to deflect them on their way.

Pretty soon the complexity ramps up though, and various new toys enter the field of play.

Complex flavours

There are obstructing platforms, rotating bars, bouncy pads that send your savoury sprinkles flying, and teleporters that redirect them to the top of the screen.

The latter element seems like a bit of a fudge - there's no exit portal, as we've come to expect from such a mechanic. The transported sprinkles just start falling from a random point at the top of the screen.

Overall the cast of additional objects is well thought out and admirably restrained, and also opens up the possibility of experimentation.

Usually there's a fairly simple and direct solution - concentrate on one bowl at a time and use that initial principle of making gravity do most of the work.

But you can also come up with more inventive and elaborate solutions, drawing smooth ramps to launch the salt and pepper granules across the stage.

Or you can really be ambitious and try to fill both pots up simultaneously.

Push it real good?

That's why it's a bit of a shame that there's no breakdown of how you did. We're not necessarily advocating a penalty for not being quick or thorough enough, but some recognition for the efficiency of your solution would have been nice.

Indeed, Salt & Pepper's problem is that it feels too sparse, and even a little unfinished.

The visuals are just on the wrong side of minimalistic, their abstract nature clashing with the homely salt and pepper motif.

There aren't many levels, either. I blasted through the main campaign in an hour or so.

There is a difficult mode, which sees the levels repeated with embellishments such as moving pots, but it still feels like a very slight package.

I also encountered a couple of occasions where my touch inputs failed to register, necessitating a restart.

You'll like the initial taste of Salt & Pepper, then, but it won't leave you feeling particularly satisfied.
Salt & Pepper
Reviewer photo
Jon Mundy | 3 June 2014
A pleasantly familiar taste of the kind of physics puzzlers we used to see in the early days of the App Store, Salt & Pepper doesn't add enough meaty substance to the recipe
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