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Scalak review - A puzzler that plays by its own, soothing rules


For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

Scalak-a-ding-dong

Product: Scalak | Publisher:  | Format: iPhone | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
 
There are puzzle games that like to protect you. They like to ensure that you know exactly what you're doing, exactly why you're doing it, and exactly what you're going to receive when the timer ticks down or the moves run out.

Scalak does nothing of the sort. For starters there are no move or time limits, nothing distracting you from the shape-moving challenges. And second, it doesn't bother telling you what you need to do, it just lets you play, think, and figure things out for yourself.

Shaping up nicely

The game starts off tasking you with putting shapes into other shapes. They're simple, and all you need to figure out is the angle that they need to go in at.

But it doesn't take too long to get much, much more interesting. There are cubes you need to move around, lights you need to connect together, and an awful lot more.

Scalak iOS review screenshot - One of the puzzles

There's a bright charm to proceedings here, and few of the levels are going to take you more than a couple of minutes to complete. They're not super difficult, but it's fun working out where things need to go.

In fact, the game is peppered with little eureka moments, and it's these that push you on to see what's on offer next. It's never long before a new mechanic is dropped into the mix, and that keeps things delightfully fresh.

Scalak iOS review screenshot - A line-based puzzle

The game keeps you on your toes as it throws new ideas at you, but it never gets overwhelming. In fact, the atmosphere here is mainly one of calm contemplation.

And that's a feeling that few puzzle games on the App Store actually manage to get right. To balance ease and engagement is an incredibly tough ask, but Scalak does it with magnificent aplomb.

Scalak-tricks

This is the sort of game that almost everyone is going to enjoy. It's smart in all the right ways, and it never shows off when it doesn't need to. It welcomes you in, and gives you a comfortable place to sit.

And the best bit is, you might find yourself sat in that comfortable place for a good long while. Scalak is a game that's going to stick around, and while it does you're going to have a smile on your face.
 
Scalak review - A puzzler that plays by its own, soothing rules
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 24 May 2018
A wonderful, engaging puzzler, that deserves to be played by as many people as possible
 
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