Bubble popping games are a somewhat lesser played genre of games on the iDevice. Probably well known names are the earlier Bubble Bash by Gameloft and the recently ported classic Bust-A-Move by TAITO. Snood, however is published at the App Store by Electronic Arts, who are quite the powerhouse for popular iDevice games recently.
Bubble popping games are generally easy to learn and get very intense very quickly. Snood, however, seems geared more towards the casual player. The basic story and classic modes are non-time based while other games require you to finish a level within a time limit. In any case, the gameplay is easy to understand, even if you’ve never played a bubble pop game before.
Snood offers four single player game modes (story, classic, puzzle, and time attack) as well as online live play. In each level, various coloured Snoods are shown as the little cartoon characters and displayed as the “bubbles” which must be matched into groups of 3 or more of the same colour to be removed from the screen.
In the bottom middle of the screen is your launcher, which is used to shoot the loaded Snood at the area above. The controls are intuitive, being an easy left/right touch-swipes to aim the launcher and a tap on the loaded Snood to shoot. They are then launched out to snag onto the first friend they find. Snoods that are matched into groups will disappear, and any Snood below that isn’t supported will drop down. Hence it’s important to make combos in order to score higher. Additionally, each Snood you shoot into the field will cause your gauge to rise. When the gauge is filled, the top wall drops down a notch. If any Snood reaches the bottom line, it’s game over. High scoring shots will reduce the gauge fill.
Some games have graphics that just “wow” everyone, while other games appeal to a certain demographic. Snood is one of those other games. Although the cartoony graphics and cute Snoody facial expressions may appeal to some, I wasn’t really into it and felt like there could have been improvements. However, as it was ported from the classic Snood from 1996 for Windows; overhauling too many things would change the game. Fortunately, players do have to options to use the classic graphics if they want, which is a nice addition. The music is upbeat and techno-like, and albeit being a single loop it’s easy to get lost in the beat while playing.
The main thing in which is wrong with gameplay is that achievements and statistics are based on Facebook connect. Upon connecting, the game adds your profile to the Facebook Snood game application and allows you to save your achievements and ranks against your friends, as well as send push challenges and play live matches against other players. This may be convenient for people with plenty of friends who play Snood, but for the people who are less fortunate (or perhaps who may not even use Facebook), it is somewhat disappointing and leads to limited gameplay experience.
Besides the few flaws from the system, the gameplay is still fun and the variety of game modes will keep people entertained. The best way to know if Snood is for you or not would be to try the Facebook version to get a feel of the gameplay and maybe chirp at a few friends to join in. Otherwise, Snood only deserves a Tap It rating if it’s left as a standalone iDevice game.
|Title:||Snood (v1.0)||Developer:||Electronic Arts|
|Price:||$3.99||App Size:||40.3 MB|