Swap This! Review

Swap This! is a cute little puzzle game from EA Mobile and Two Tribes, the makers of Toki Tori. The generic-sounding name doesn’t reveal much, but we found Swap This! to be charming and fun, even if it is light on the standard features we’ve come to expect from iOS games.

Your goal is to swap blocks of ice, each of which contain a colorful fish, sort of like those novelty ice cubes with a fake fly trapped inside. When you group together four or more frozen fish, the ice will break and free them to swim away.

There are three different modes in Swap This!, two of which are high-score runs and one of which contains a series of puzzles. We spent most of our time in the puzzle mode, arranging devious collections of colorful frozen fish with as few swaps as possible.

Swapping on thin ice.

The two high-score modes, however, are fairly disappointing. In one, you have to make matches to keep a bigger fish from eating your frozen friends, and in the other, you only have one minute to rack up a high score. The biggest problem is that you can only share your high scores via Facebook or Twitter, instead of the more iOS-friendly Game Center or OpenFeint. Swap This! does give you some developer scores to try to beat, but we’d rather compare our best runs to those of our friends.

With better high score leaderboards, we could see ourselves returning more often for the game’s one-minute or endless survival runs. Also, a progressively more challenging adventure mode like the ones found in Critter Crunch and Linkoidz would be a great way to round out this app.

Swap This! is fast, colorful, and would be a great purchase for kids. Buy this one for the puzzles, and hope for some worthwhile updates to the leaderboards and gameplay modes.

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