Welcome back, dear reader! Take this pillow for more comfortable lumbar support. There, isn't that better? Can I freshen up your drink there? Here's a little soft music while we provide soothing neckrubs, and cool you with gently-waving palm boughs. Making a good thing even better is the whole design philosophy behind tamaii's outstanding new picross game Pixelo, and boy is the improvement ever noticable! Sure to become a touchstone of the genre for all its refinements, not only is the visual theming stellar but it features more unlockables than you can shake a stick at, a shop where you can buy upgrades, and its own leveling system just in case you wanted a few role-playing game elements with your picross. If you prefer a comfortable environment while chisling away the various possibilities until the underlying pattern emerges, Pixelo is a must-play — and if you haven't tried picross yet, this is absolutely the one to start with.
Movement is with the [arrows], while [X] marks a square and [spacebar] confirms. Or, squares are selected with the mouse and either marked or confirmed depending on which you've got selected at the moment. It's all a matter of which you'd prefer, and through gameplay you'll unlock new movement buffs like the ability to go off the map in one direction only to wrap around to the other, or to hold down an arrow and go schooming off at entirely unsafe cruising speeds. These become important because your performance in terms of proficiency, accuracy and timeliness affect your end-of-level earning of gold and experience points in... some... nebulous, synchronistic way not actually described in the game. When there's no explanation for how something works it's usually I-Ching stalks, don't you find? Your experience is what causes you to level, which unlocks new badges you can then buy with gold and then equip for various additional buffs. Progressing through levels will also reward you with prizes which can grant you new abilities. You'll also have the option to purchase the Shop, which will enable you to buy different background music, background themes and tilesets to customize the look as you'd like it. The Option menu has even more customizations you'll unlock as you play, which will allow you to recolor the background and disable any features you've unlocked but in retrospect would rather you hadn't. Breaking the sound barrier with your cursor could be one of these. The visual style is uncannily like John Cooney's breakout hit Idleplex minus all the deranged random elements and fecophilia — which some readers will appreciate — and beyond that all the customization options really provide a the sense of personalization and belonging.
Which is important, since Pixelo also comes with over five hundred puzzles, over 100 badges and prizes, autosave, records and stats of your progress, and daily puzzles (which tamaii is currently fixing as of this writing). Oh, and did I mention an Android version? Yep, there's an Android version in the works and you're going to want it, and if you've got an iOS, Pixelo is on that too. As of this writing, some Firefox users are finding Pixelo a little laggy (while others aren't), so be aware that the developer knows about it and is already working on it. It's also worth noting that this game marks tamaii's debut, and that with such a solid five-star title like this people are cheering about it all over the internet already despite it being the work of one guy off in South Korea. The moral of the story here is that people appreciate value, and that if you provide it they'll come flocking to you in droves from everywhere in the world. If content is king, tamaii is definitely the developer to watch!