(SNAPP Reviews aren’t really a full fledged game review as much as they are just a way for us to give you a quick “heads-up” on whether a certain game is good or not. It usually means that we haven’t finished the game yet, but have played a good enough chunk to know whether it’s worth your time/money or not.)
So, normally I don’t write about games like this (arcade-puzzle games). Not because I don’t like them, but because it’s hard to put more than a couple of paragraphs together on them. Even the App Store descriptions are fairly short. Usually you can tell what the game is like by a short trailer or a couple of screenshots. Not to mention, there are a ton of arcade-y/puzzle-y games on the App Store. The iPhone and iPad are perfect for these types of games. I love these kinds of games. They are just hard to write about. Anyway, I decided to give it a shot.
Pendulum (by Teaboy Games) just released a week ago on June 7th. I’ve been playing the game off and on since then. The best way to describe the game is that you control a glowing circle that’s kind of like hanging from a string. Think of a hypnotist swinging pocket watch in front of your face saying, “You’re getting sleepy! Very sleepy!”. That’s exactly what Pendulum is like! The only difference is that you need to swing that “pocket watch” to where it hits different circles scattered throughout the screen. The twist (there’s ALWAYS a twist!) is that the “pocket watch” is constantly dropping toward the bottom of the screen. Once it hits bottom, you fail the level. So, there is definitely a bit of urgency. One good thing is that you have a limited number of times where you can wind the circle/pocket watch back up toward the top of the screen if you missed your mark.
Of course, levels gradually get tougher the further you progress. The game does a good job of not making things too difficult too soon. After a few levels, you will be greeted with all kinds of obstacles that you need to stay away from. Control-wise, I felt that they did a good job. My one issue at first was that I was trying to tap and hold to make the pendulum swing. It took me a few before I figured out that a simple tap will make the “pocket watch” swing well enough, while holding just made it drop faster.
Hopefully I explained things well enough for you. Like I said, it’s tough writing about games like this. But, I’ve been having a good time playing this throughout the week. Things can get a little tricky in the later levels, but nothing too hard that you won’t be able to pass it after a few tries. The only thing I could have wished for was maybe some different artwork that you could unlock the further you got. It would have been cool playing the game with an actual pocket watch or a SNAPPZILLA “S” (wink wink devs!). All in all, Pendulum is a great puzzler with a good soundtrack. Not to mention it’s a “premium” game, so there is no worries about energy, social media stuff, and IAPs. It’s refreshing to see games like this where there are no worries besides just playing the game and having a good time.