Puzzlejuice (universal)is described by developers Colaboratory as a “game that will punch your brain in the face” – a pretty accurate description, save for the concussion symptoms and parallels to TRON. Mix elements from word scramble games and Tetris, inject unhealthy amounts of caffeine into it, and you’ve got Puzzlejuice, a wildly addicting, insanely-paced word game.
There are a number of modes in Puzzlejuice, but the gameplay is always the same – connect cascading puzzle pieces to turn them into letters, and connect those letters into words. Very simple on paper, but to play Puzzlejuice is a mayhem-inducing experience. There is a well-written tutorial at the beginning that eases players into the game and explains the mechanics well, but getting into the different core modes reveals Puzzlejuice‘s primary mission: to overload the senses.
It might not sound like all that much fun, but the frenzy isn’t frustrating. Getting into a flow of matching dropping blocks, collecting power-ups and spelling words is a pleasure, and with a little experience, piling up impressive scores is a breeze. A recent update also added a fantastic feature adding a picture-in-picture option when spelling out words, which can be finicky at times for players with big fingers.
Visually, the game is simple, but the bright red/yellow/green tiles on the black background look sharp and elegant, and the small text boxes are easily readable, even on the smaller iPhone screen. Like any great puzzle game, Puzzlejuice features fantastic background music, always essential in setting the mood – which in this case, is pure mayhem.
I simply can’t get enough of Puzzlejuice‘s lighting-quick gameplay. In addition to the core Hard and Euro Extreme modes, there is a 90-second Zen Mode for those looking for a quick juicy fix. I can’t recommend this game enough for fans of puzzle and word games… just be warned, once you’ve tasted the fluorescent-colored, caffeine-soaked Puzzlejuice, there’s no turning back.