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    jp's Puchi Puchi Virus (DS)

    [November 4, 2010 01:22:45 PM]
    Abstract "casual/puzzle" games (e.g. tetris, bejeweled, etc.) tend to be hit or miss in my opinion. Some are too complicated, others too simple, some are too frenzied while others aren't exciting enough. I guess the "ideal" is one where the core mechanic is simple, yet the game is able to slowly ramp up its difficulty and complexity.

    Puchi Puchi virus seems to have most of those ingredients. The core mechanic (creating triangles of same-type virii)is simple and there is a surprising depth to the system since you need to create "chains" by detonating a triangle such that it starts a chain-reaction of detonations from other overlapping triangles, there are lots of different colored virii, the virii move around, and the triangles "expire" if you wait too long.

    Ultimately, however, I found the experience of playing the game was confusing, frustrating, boring. Why? The pacing was off...sort of.

    I was expecting a medium-slow paced game where I had perhaps a few seconds to decide what to do. A leisurely pace, if you will. The game is actually quite frantic, you have to make and commit to your moves quickly (the time between creating a triangle and it expiring isn't that long, the time between selecting a triangle vertex and the next before the vertex expires seems even shorter). This isn't a bad thing per se, it just wasn't what I was expecting so it took me a while to adjust. On the other hand, the pacing of the meta-game is the complete opposite. I'll get to that later...

    The game's narrative goes something like this: there's a virus, it's infected people and turned them into weird creatures, you cure them. So, the game is structured as a long stream of medical cases (patients) that you have to cure. Each patient is it's own game with its own goals (e.g. achieve a certain score in 3mins). I think there are more than 100 different patients. So, this seems like an good thing until you realize that there are only about 4 different types of goals. It gets old REALLY fast. While each case usually takes about 3 mins to play, it's a real drag to have to play the same game 10 times...with basically the same goal. I kid you not, I had to beat 500 pts, then 750, then 100, then 1250, then 1500. I think the first time I played it I cleared 2000 (or something like that)...

    So, the meta-game's pacing is's a slow drag to work your way through all the cases even as the individual cases might be frantic and frenzied. At least the animal's names are funny...
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    jp's Puchi Puchi Virus (DS)

    Current Status: Stopped playing - Got Bored

    GameLog started on: Monday 18 October, 2010

    GameLog closed on: Thursday 4 November, 2010

    jp's opinion and rating for this game

    Poorly designed meta-game ruins an otherwise interesting casual-puzzler.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstar

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