Block Drop is a brand new puzzle game, and a new direction for game designer Dan Russell-Pinson, creator of the previously reviewed Tipping Point series. Instead of the adventure games he is known for, Dan set out to create a game with wider appeal. And the game's redeeming qualities don't end there.
The game offers classic casual gameplay with simple instructions that will seem immediately familiar to many: Use the [arrow] keys to jump from block to block making them all disappear. Press [shift] to jump two spaces. As you jump off a block, it sinks away into obscurity. The objective is to make all but the checkerboard square disappear by landing on all the other squares first.
Sometimes two or more blocks will be stacked on top of one another, and they will require multiple jumps to remove completely. These stacked blocks can make it difficult to see every block, so an overhead mini-map is provided in the upper right corner of the display to help you plan your moves accordingly.
Rather than shunting you on to the next level as in most puzzle games, each level gradually transitions into the next. The end block of one puzzle becomes the starting block of the next. Hours pass gently as you progress, slowly revealing sunsets, starscapes, and sunrises.
Analysis: Although we have seen similar puzzles games before, what sets this one apart is the implementation. Apart from the usual photo-realistic backgrounds and images that we've seen in Dan's other games, the levels and even the music is all randomly generated, ensuring that every game that you play is unique. A code is generated with each level that allows you to come back to that same level, but the puzzle may be different, so sharing level codes for help with solutions is just not possible, unfortunately.
Since each level is randomly generated, the game goes on indefinitely, with each level increasing slightly in complexity and difficulty, at least in theory anyways. As can be expected from randomly generated levels, the relative difficulty jumps around a bit. A minor complaint, though, since it can be refreshing to get a slight reprieve following a more challenging level.
Uniquely engaging, captivating and relaxing—all of these things in an enjoyable puzzle game with great replay value besides.