Developer – Rocky Hong
Price – Free
Push & Pop took inspiration from Tetris and tried to turn it on its side hoping to get the same addicting gameplay, but missed the mark badly. The game is simple and takes place on a five by five grid with blocks that regenerate. The goal is to use your game icon to move blocks horizontally and vertically to create rows of five. When a row of five blocks is completed, the blocks explode giving you points. The game continues at a slow pace until enough blocks generate and you can’t move your icon, knowing your game is over is relief and actually, was the most rewarding part of this bust. As the game proceeds some blocks become fixed in place adding a little more strategy to a game that doesn’t already require much thought. Blocks don’t regenerate on a fixed time but rather when you move your icon twice. This takes away the quick reaction time required by similar games, and lacks the excitement and the “rush” as experienced in games like Dr. Mario or Tetris. Furthermore, making a mistake just doesn’t have the consequences. We all remember a mistake in Tetris resulted in a quick cascading of blocks that would ultimately end with the iconic “Game Over”. Making the perfect move doesn’t provide a big advantage in the game as you have to wait for enough blocks to regenerate to make another opportunity.
Being a big puzzle and strategy game fan, I was naturally interested in the simplistic style of the game, but Push & Pop was really disappointing. The slow pace and lack of real strategy makes the game boring and screams “Don’t play me anymore!”. I wouldn’t play this game even if I was waiting in line at the DMV. Skip the download and use that extra time playing a true puzzle game, The Guides Axiom.