Where's My Water?
Alligators aren't usually known for being picky about their personal hygiene. Swampy, the smiling 'gator who lives deep in the sewers, is quite a bit different. While the rest of the alligators are tearing up everything in the sewers, Swampy is getting ready to take a bath. It seems his shower isn't quite working, though, so you'll have to suss out the source of the problem. In Where's My Water?, a smartly-built physics-based puzzle game from Disney Mobile, its your job to cut holes in the soil to direct the water down to Swampy's tub. And with things like movable walls, puddles of acid, and lively bits of mold, that's much easier said than done.
Where's My Water? keeps the mechanics pretty simple and allows you one real move to perform: digging in the dirt. By swiping your finger across the screen, you can remove trails of soil to make a pathway for the water to flow down. Every movement counts, as the gloopy water moves with quite a bit of realism, and any snag in the tunnel can cause unforseen difficulties down the road. Swampy's tub has an open end to receive the water you guide his way, so if you can get at least some of it on the move, his tub will be full and he'll be one happy alligator.
Beyond guiding water through soil, you'll also work with broken pipes throughout the levels, using them to swing water up and around tough areas. Pools of acid also exist, creating a sense of urgency when they start to burn through everything they come in contact with. Mold will block passageways if water comes in contact with it, and the dangerous purple liquid will eliminate water while burning away mold, making it a powerful but dangerous ally. You'll also want to collect the rubber ducks scattered around each stage. Touch them with enough water to grab them, raising your score with each one. In addition, some levels have hidden bonus items you can find and store in your collection available from the main menu.
Analysis: It's easy to overlook Where's My Water?. On the surface, the game looks too simple, too cute, and maybe even a bit too child-oriented. When you play it, though, you'll quickly realize it has a lot to offer even the sophisticated adult! The game is going for the same audience that enjoys Cut the Rope, and while Where's My Water? doesn't quite hit the same level of challenge or entertainment as that game, it comes very close in a number of ways.
The 80 or so levels in Where's My Water? are well-designed and quite varied, pushing a few action-oriented experiences in from time to time that force you to act immediately when the stage loads. The variety of contraptions you'll deal with also increases, and those movable gates become a bit of a puzzle later on. The difficulty never gets too high, making it a good casual diversion or even a great game for the kids to play.
Where's My Water? is a well-made, good-looking mobile game with a strong sense of personality. Its design is smart at every turn, creating an experience that flawlessly hooks you from the beginning and keeps you entertained for the whole ride through.