With the winter quarter finishing up next week at RIT, I've had little time of late to spend digging up those hard-to-find gems I like to feature here. No worries. David Thorburn's amazing physics-based Teagames saves the day.
Blueprint is a brand new blue brainteaser similar in concept to the previously reviewed CCL Game and to the Incredible Machine series of games from as far back as 1993. The objective of the game is to arrange the component parts on the play field so that when the ball is released it will hit the target.
Use the mouse to drag the parts around on the grid of the blueprint background. A piece will either 'snap' into place or will turn red if it cannot be positioned where you move it. Once all pieces are positioned the way you like, click the "Start" button to set the ball in motion.
Analysis: Blueprint is an elegantly simple game that increases in challenge and difficulty as the levels progress, though levels may be completed in any order. The scoring and high score system for this game is flawed since the levels don't change each time you play. Attaining a high score is reduced to those who figure out the correct placement first, only to speed through a second time knowing the answers. Nonetheless, David's exceptional Flash physics engine has been put to good use in yet another engaging casual game for his Teagames website. Wonderful stuff.
I really do love these types of games, and yet it seems I am always left wanting more. It's as if there is potential here for a much more gratifying experience, one that includes all the various components and contraptions, but with different objectives than simply hitting a target. Something like a pachinko or a pinball machine in which I can arrange the various bumpers and pegs to yield the highest score, maybe?
When I was very young, I had a unique set of wooden blocks with grooves that marbles could be rolled upon. Corner blocks had tunnels carved within to redirect the marbles at right angles. With the entire set, an elaborate system could be built to the great reward of simply watching the marbles travel through it. Those blocks were my favorite childhood toy, and I can't help but think of the good times I had with them when I play games such as this.