Sprinkle: Water splashing fire fighting fun! is an iOS and Android release from Mediocre AB. It is currently available as a free download on the App Store and for 99 cents on Google Play and carries additional in-app purchases.
Sprinkle is a level-based physics puzzle game that puts players in the role of a one-eyed (but two pupils) monster working as its city’s fire fighter. Every stage starts off the same way: Part of the town is on fire. The player needs to control and aim the vertically-situated fire engine and sprayer in order to extinguish the fires before the town’s residents lose their homes. The process feels very simple and the game’s first few stages provide visual hints as to how certain objects and tools work. Most of the work is done with the fire engine. While players can’t move the vehicle, they can change the water gun’s height and angle, then press and hold the red button to shoot. Water is a limited resource, however, so players need to use it wisely.
After the first couple of levels, Sprinkle stops with the idea of “Just point and shoot here” and starts requiring the player to consider the physics of gravity and water. In Sprinkle, water doesn’t sink into the ground until it sits on a level surface for a second. So, when water is blasted onto a hill or over a cliff, it’ll create a stream or waterfall that keeps going until its momentum is stopped or it falls off-screen. This requires players to carefully (but quickly) map out how the water will flow, and adjust their plans accordingly. To make things more difficult, there are occasionally interactive elements within levels. Usually in the form of boulders, players can shoot various objects in order to move them around, creating new pathways. Stages that feature these tools usually require them to be used, but figuring out how is often the challenge.
Each level in Sprinkle comes with a time limit. While it’s not a set time limit, players need to put out the fires before the houses burn to the ground. Not every house needs to be saved to advance to the next level, but after a while saving just one building is a challenge itself. The difficulty feels just right in most situations, especially for players who simply want to complete a level, rather than perfect it. Players who want to master the game will have their work cut out for them, though most stages will only take a couple tries to fully complete, as there is always a “right way” to do things.
There are a ton of stages in Sprinkle, though most need to be unlocked by completing previous levels. Players who may be struggling with levels have another option, and it serves as Sprinkle’s second form of monetization. Every level in the game can be automatically unlocked for 99 cents. A lot of players will pass on this option, especially since it costs 99 cents to purchase the game initially, but those who want to move forward after getting stuck have a cheap and effective way of doing so. Unlocking all levels for a small fee is an excellent feature that hopefully makes its way into more games.
Overall, Sprinkle is a really fun game with some cute charm. It’s far from the best physics puzzle game on the market, but its use of water and gravity make it stand out among the rest. The controls may feel a bit awkward at first, but after the first few stages, most players should have them under control.
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Sprinkle is a basic, yet challenging game with a ton of charm to back it up.