Implode! from Microsoft Games Studios is a physics puzzle game for Windows Phone. The goal is to demolish a series of ever more complex structures with a limited number of explosive devices. Like most good games, it starts off easy and tutors you in the mechanics of the game as the initial levels progress. And, like many good puzzle games, simply achieving the main goal is just part of the fun. Each “project” is scored using a number of criteria including the number of explosive devices used and the height of the rubble in relation to a baseline level for scoring. A numeric score as well as a letter grade is given at the successful completion of each project in a level.
A good casual game for me is one that entices me to replay levels to increase individual game (project) scores and test new ideas. Implode! meets this criterion for me the same way Angry Birds did. A good casual game is also one that lets me spend as much or as little time as desired or available. And, this game meets that criterion too. It is, however, difficult to stop after just one or two projects. But, it is possible.
Achievements for gameplay are reflected in the player’s Xbox Live account which can be found both on the Windows Phone device as well as the player’s Xbox 360 game console.
I have two complaints about the game. First, the explosive devices at the bottom of the display are very tiny graphical objects. These objects are sometimes difficult to point to (they disappear under a fingertip) and drag to a beam. Second, the magnifiying glass effect used to help place the explosive devices on the structure actually hinders the process. For reference, I played the game on an HTC Surround with a 3.8-inch display.
Implode! is available starting today (Sept. 21, 2011) for $2.99 in the Microsoft Marketplace on Windows Phone devices as well as the Zune desktop software.
Disclosure: Microsoft provided a copy of the game free of charge for review.