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Eklips – Review

Eklips is such a simple twist on the Tetris formula but it works exceptionally well. Instead of clearing lines, Eklips asks you to drop blocks to create squares around a central point in the middle of the screen. There is no time limit per move, its all about skill. However the risk vs reward for creating squares as close to the edge of the playing area will soon entice you and this is where the game gets interesting.

The light tells you where your block will end up and this move will complete an inner square nicely.

Early in the game you’ll get used to dropping blocks of different shapes into the playing area. The blocks have to hit something – like a slider puzzle they just fly until they crash. You have all four edges of the playing area to use and corners are nifty as you can throw a block both horizontally and vertically. When you create a square around the central point, it’ll vanish and all blocks will move a step closer towards the centre of the screen. Blocks do not break up so you need to take that into account as random parts of a previous shape can and will be left hanging on its own, slowly moving towards the centre. After a few rounds, you’ll start to get bullish.

The score per square completed massively increases the further out you complete one. Instead of playing it safe with 25 points, you could be earning 250 but to do so puts you in danger at all times. The game is over as soon as a block spawns that cannot fit anywhere and so if you are squeezing blocks in around the perimeter, you’ll need both skill and luck to survive sometimes. You never know what the next blocks coming are going to be so it pays to keep a happy medium, creating squares in the middle layers. Usually when a game over occurs, you can trace it back to a wrong move or bad decision a good 20 moves previous, yet you’ll get drawn back in again and again in the pursuit of a high score.

Points are best dished out on the outer perimeters but getting the right blocks and knowing where to place them requires luck and skill. Its very addictive though.

Eklips has a fantastic premise but its cheap £1.69 price tag means it then doesn’t expand on it beyond a casual mode. There are normal and hard difficulties but the only difference is that hard occasionally throws in larger S and U shaped blocks. Only your best score is saved locally too. Eklips has a calm aesthetic so it makes sense to keep it casual but a 3 minute score attack mode would have made this game superb. A two player score attack mode would have made this god tier. I’d have settled for some colour palette unlocks but the single, admittedly very elegant, colour palette is all that we have.

This is a case of an absolutely superb game that is slightly hemmed in by its budget price tag. I hope Eklips does well enough to warrant an expanded sequel because with some additional modes, we’d have ourselves a genuine top tier puzzle game. As it is, Eklips is great for puzzle gamers who don’t mind the endless nature of a block game and those who don’t want to be under time pressure to make a move.

Final Thoughts
Addictive, clever and tricky. Whilst there is only an endless mode, this is a great idea at a very budget price.
Extremely addictive and satisfying to play.
Elegant visual and audio design.
A great twist on a familiar concept.
Only a basic mode. You'll need to be happy with an endless loop to get the most out of Eklips.

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