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Ant Tracks


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Ant TracksAn action puzzle sorting game filled with bugs and grubs and leafy plants, Ant Tracks puts you in control of an army of ants on their way back to the nest after a successful foraging.

Your job is to guide each ant to its proper food store depending on what it is carrying. Food stores are the long narrow hollowed logs and each is labeled with a picture of what should be deposited inside: bug, grub or leaf. Ants move like Lemmings along the maze of horizontal twigs until they arrive at a food store, at which time they hop in regardless of whether it's the right one.

Alter an ant's path by changing the direction of the red arrows along the twigs. Ants will abide by the red arrows and turn accordingly. Continue clicking on the red arrows to sort each ant to its proper destination.

Each level sets predefined goals of how many of each type of food must be collected in its proper store to advance to the next level. If you fail to meet any goal, it's game over. There are 20 levels total.

Later levels present hazards that you will have to stay mindful of if you are to keep enough ants safe and advance to the next level. Venus flytraps, spiders, and dragonflies are all hungry for ants, but the hazard that each presents can be mitigated with the proper technique.

Analysis: Ant Tracks is a magnificently beautiful and enjoyable game that is extremely well-polished. There is much about this game that I believe the developer got right, not the least of which is the ambient cricket background chirping noises and the simple and effective soundtrack that has an almost tranquilizing effect. It's very reminiscent of Pikmin, and it sets the stage for a delightful casual game experience.

The photo-realism of the images used in this game and the subtle yet detailed animations all work exceptionally well together and serve to bring the game to life. The transition between levels with the blur effect and the fern leaves is very nicely done and is an excellent touch.

The level design in the game works, but is not as balanced as it could be. For example, I found level 15 to be very difficult to get 30 of 32 total ants to their proper destination with each having to pass over a flytrap. At least a level or two after 15 seemed a bit easier. This is but a minor blemish to an otherwise excellent effort.

A quality casual game from PlayerThree in the UK, Ant Tracks is available to play only at Fingertime in the UK. Beware of pop-ups and scantily clad women in the ads next to the game when you visit. As such, this game is rated PG13.

Play Ant Tracks

21 Comments

The photorealism sets it apart from other games, definitely. Reminds me of Lemmings, but obviously much simpler.

I wonder if I can get on that scoreboard.

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So cute, and challenging! The first level reminded me of Lemmings.

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You thought of Pikmin, I thought of Global Player. Still, sounds like they improved the core idea in good ways (and the core idea in itself is good enough to repeat), so I have to put this on the "to try" list.

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Agreed, Ben. The game is indeed similar to Global Player.

My reference to Pikmin was in describing the soundtrack, which is very Pikmin-like.

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Jay, I had been playing this game for a few days (found at lazylaces) and I also found level 15 to be at a much higher difficulty than subsequent levels. Today, though, I guess after your post, the number of ants to get to the proper destination had been changed to 22 out of 32. Good going! I suspect there may be other tweaking going on, because after finishing level 18, the game ended. And, as an aside, I also found the game similar to Global Player, a game that I really like. I wish there were more of these type games.

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This says at the top "linux", so I got all ready to try it...but it didn't work, needs flash 8. I can't find flash 8 for Linux anywhere, just 7.

If it exists, please tell me! If not, please stop labelling flash-8-only applications with "Linux," it's just frustrating.

Grumble grumble grumble, wait 6 months and still no flash 8, grumble grumble.

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Yes Ben The Game Reminds Me Too To Global Player!

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As someone devoid of the imagination or brain power it takes to require a computer for anything more than gaming, chat, and a few other things need not mentioned, I find it amusing that people who consider themselves above that (and therefore don't have a PC for which games are apparently designed around) still try so hard.

I guess even hipster Mac users and hardcore Linux deviants need some sort of diversion, but my God, when you come across so many sycophants on so many forums, it becomes hard to believe.

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Heh, I think that's just the natural tendency of people wanting to have their cake and eat it too kicking in. No matter how you slice it, you're going to have to make a sacrifice, be it of time, money, or the kinds of games you can play. I've always figured that there's far too much stuff out there to get into and get interested in (books, movies, TV shows (though the good ones are a tad scarce nowadays), music, etc.) even without games, so I'm not too unhappy about being unable to play HALO or Super Mario Sunshine because I went for the PS2 instead of the Xbox or Gamecube. I'll enjoy the company of Jak, Ratchet, Sly Cooper, and Ico probably just as much as those and any other games I missed out on. And if I can't find something on the PS2 to do that's cool, I'll just head online and find something. Maybe I'll read through an online comic, or watch a bunch of flash movies, or do something else, but I can always find something, so that I'm not really sad if I don't have access to this or that game. If I can't do one thing, I'll do another. I can live and even fail to be bored without constantly trying everything new that comes down the pipes.

Although... isn't it possible to emulate Windows and thus manage to get Flash 8 working that way? If so, your problem may have an easy fix.

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I think this game was built by playerthree.

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I second Bill's request for not labeling games that require Flash 8 with the Linux label. Please? I have no problem with the fact that there are games I can't play because I choose an alternate operating system, but it is frustrating to see one clearly marked with Linux but which turns out to be unplayable.

And yes, Ben, there is a windows emulator, which is how I wound up playing the game, but it's still not the same as playing natively. For one thing, since you're basically running one program (your browser) within another program (Wine - the windows emulator I use), it's a lot slower than it would be without the emulator.

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Cool game, but not near as good as Global Player

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pritty sights pritty graphics, very good version of it but the game idea has been done to death...

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Jay, Thanks for the violence/nudity content comments. My little one loves your site and we enjoy playing the games together. I always feel comfortable with the games you review. Keep up the good work!

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Cheers, Andy, and you're right, it is PlayerThree. I've updated the description above to include that. =)

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Oh.. I didn't like this.
I check it on slow computer, so. Maybe I am wrong about it.
However it could be good for other people. I checked all levels. There is possible to skip levels with "step forward" in flash player.
This is logic game. It's challenging. Just not my taste.
I didn't like graphics but I liked sounds.

Last level code "pixel"

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What a cool game. The music was nice a fresh and the game reminded me a sunny summer day, although, with this heat, I am not sure that is a good thing. A little slow in the begining for the "hardcore" gamers (as you like to call us,) but worth the play.

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Nice,
really love the music. Relaxing.

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Not bad, but so slow in the beginning I quit - too easy and really boring.

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level 5

plant

at this point, i will give it a rest :p

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littlefish June 3, 2010 5:15 AM

Beautiful, but a bit too slow to become really interesting. At least there could be some kind of speed-it-up.

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