Linkoidz Review

You’re stranded on a hostile planet, your shield’s energy is running low, and waves of enemy aliens are piling up fast right outside. It sounds like a great premise for a shooter, but Linkoidz is actually a fast-paced arcade puzzle game that borrows a few elements from shooters in order to keep your pulse pounding.

Linkoidz is the latest game from Retro Dreamer, who previously developed the games Sneezies and Eyegore’s Eye Blast. Their unique art style carries over nicely to Linkoidz, which features a hero that looks like a combination of Starship Troopers and Spaceman Spiff, with Snoods playing the part of the alien Linkoidz.

The trouble with Tribbles.

To defend your spaceman, you have to flick down under a column of Linkoidz to suck them into your gun, then flick up to shoot them into a different column. Forming a match of three Linkoidz will make them disappear, and hopefully cause a cascade that can result in point-rich combos. You can trap multiple Linkoidz at once, as long as they’re the same color, so you’ll develop a nice rhythm as you build up long chains and fire them back at the aliens.

Ice, boulders, and stronger aliens are your main obstacles and opponents, along with your rapidly deteriorating shield. The more Linkoidz you have on your shield, the faster it disappears, so you’ll have to clear them off quickly.

He died as he lived: Screaming and covered with aliens.

Through a combination of tutorials, challenge levels, and high-score modes, there are many different ways to grab a gameplay fix. We especially loved the challenge levels, which can become extremely tough, but we wish there were more of them than just 18. You can also challenge your friends to beat your scores on any level, which is a fantastic addition.

On a Retina display, the graphics in Linkoidz really pop, and we loved the vivid colors that scroll by as your blast away aliens. Linkoidz is also a universal app, so it’ll run natively on your iPad as well.

All the elements of Linkoidz work together perfectly: The eye-catching graphics and animation, the exciting soundtrack; the novel control scheme, and the increasingly frantic challenge. Like finding intelligent life on another planet, finding great arcade puzzle games in the App Store is a rarity that captures our imagination.

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