Pixel Puzzles 2: Birds is not only the third Pixel Puzzle game in the series with the first being Pixel Puzzles: Japan (2014), the second being a zombie themed action puzzle spin-off title called Pixel Puzzles: Undeadz (2014). This new game also marks the start of the second series of Pixel Puzzle games and what on Earth is this game all about? This game has you putting together digital jigsaw puzzles that are all themed after birds, a type of animal that can be very pretty to look at and also one of nature's most tasty of creatures. The concept is very simple and straightforward but will there anything wrong with this game to where it makes this game fall into pieces (pun intended). (Click "Read More" to read the full review and find out).
There's no story to be found in this game what so ever but you're not going into this one expecting a game about going on dates with birds in a Japanese high school (my reviews of THOSE games are coming soon), you're going into this one to put together puzzles. The concept behind making a game like this is very uncommon, often not done very well, and ends up being shovel ware for the Nintendo Wii. This game however is a game where the devs put some thought into it, thus trying to make a game that you'll get into. Does this game hook you in? Yes, yes it does.
The way the puzzle system works in this game is that you are shown a picture of what you are putting together and then you'll have to pick up the puzzle pieces and put them on the right stuff, it is so simple to where I didn't have to describe the game to you (but I did). The puzzle pieces are all scattered around in a moat surrounding the puzzle and you know you put it in the right spot when it snaps into place on the field. Once you've placed a piece of the puzzle in the right spot, you won't be able to move it around, that's a great thing as it removes the frustration of accidentally removing the placed piece and having to place it onto the field once again. You also don't have to put the piece in their exact spots as it has a small magnetic field that draws the pieces into the right spot. Not all pieces will be in the right position because some pieces will require some turning, while it does add challenge, it can get very frustrating.
This game isn't really hard to beat but beating the game is very time consuming due to some puzzles will take hours to complete. Since some puzzles take hours to complete, I'm glad that there is a save system where you do not have to start the whole puzzle from scratch for if you decide to turn the game off, you can just pick up and play from right where you left off. All the puzzles are not unlocked right away, so you'll have to unlock them by completing the puzzles as you go along and it is very satisfying unlocking more levels, opposed to feeling dread of having to do more.
This game does have a three part hint system and each kind of hint system can be activated depending on how many crabs you have. Nope, not talking about the kind down your pants but the kinds of crabs you find on the beach and these crabs will appear on the field, you can capture them to help pay for hints. The kind of hints you get are: 1. The image of the puzzle will flash on the screen and will slowly fade. 2. A hint that automatically rotates the piece to its correct side. 3. Shows you the place where to put down the piece. Each hint will require a certain amount of crabs but they come in handy and you will use them when you get the chance to.
A problem I have is that not only the puzzle pieces are in the water, the options, settings, and menu icons are also floating around the water. This will lead to frustrations and you might lose track of them due to that they can float over the puzzle pieces, so that makes some of the puzzle pieces hard to find and that's not good at all. I saw what they were going for with the placement of all the important menu buttons but it isn't a very good system and does more harm than good. This problem is also present in a few of the games in this series and it is just as painful to use in those games as well.
The presentation in this game is very fun as it goes for an all out sea and rocks theme that'd you'd see sea birds living on and it adds a fun atmosphere. While fun, the coloring and graphics are very basic and some of the graphics are a bit mediocre and ugly but it's not like you are going to care with this one, you'll be too busy focusing on the puzzles rather than focusing on the background stuff. Music in this game is passable, it sets a good mood but nothing you'd want in your music player. I did enjoy the sound effects as it was just ambient noises of birds at the beach and added to the fun atmosphere.
Overall, this game is better than you'd think and I surprisingly enjoyed it. If you are not a fan of the bird theme, they have other themes such as Japan, Space, and even Anime. I do recommend giving this one a go, it's great for playing during lunch breaks and/or as a breather between action packed games... I only wish that I could end this review with a bird pun but maybe that's a good thing as it'll only leave me sounding like a turkey.
Game: Pixel Puzzles 2 - Birds
Developer: Decaying Logic
Publisher: KISS ltd
Price: $9.99 (Steam)