Super Juicy in Review – Bubble, Bubble, Toil and More Bubble!

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As the developer quoted in the App Store description of the game, Super Juicy is what happened when Tetris and Bubble Wrap had a baby. It is as satisfying as Bubble Wrap – in Technicolor, to boot – with the varied and imaginative styling of Tetris. It should be on the list of the best iPhone/iPod Touch games ever but right now, it’s not getting the buzz that it deserves.

You need to pop at least three adjacent bubbles of the same color to eliminate them. Make the most out of the nifty accelerometer based controls to tilt the device and direct where the bubbles will fall. Be careful that you don’t pop a lone bubble or two – the bubble inflates, and you also lose some points in the process. Watch out for mines, too!

Popping bubbles sounds easy enough, but you need a sharp eye and dexterous fingers to pop with accuracy and speed. Among the sea of blue, green, red, yellow and an occasional purple, a few bubbles have fruits inside – a banana here, a strawberry and cherry there. Pop the fruity bubbles and you get a small multiplier to improve your score. In the higher levels, the bubbles grow bigger and bouncier by themselves (growth spurt!), and playfully squeeze into the tiniest of spaces. Fortunately there are power-ups that randomly appear to make the job easier. For instance, you can eliminate bubbles with bombs or pull them into black holes.

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Aim for the stars and try to score as many combos as you can for the ultimate Super Juicy high. Popping groups of bubbles in rapid succession increases the multiplier until you hit nirvana: Super Juicy. As the bubbles are constantly moving, it’s quite a challenge to pop them continuously without losing momentum. While pretty fluid and intuitive, game controls are bursting with frantic matching and popping; I haven’t been able to maximise them – whew!

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The current version is the product of customer feedback and boasts significant improvements including a new and improved look, online leader board integration, more game modes and unlock-able achievements.

There are now four game modes: classic, action, bonus and chaos. You can easily distinguish one mode from the other in terms of game play, level of difficulty and duration. The great thing about the new game modes is that they are different enough from each other and showcase different facets of the game. Classic mode is extended play, with a nicely paced progression of difficulty. Try the action or bonus mode if you just want a quick fix, or go for chaos if you’re a Super Juicy expert. In the timed modes, there are also special power ups which extend the game.

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Super Juicy’s graphics are colorful and the animation is vibrant with cascading, gently interacting bubbles and constant, exciting movement. The game has solidly grounded physics; the bubbles behave like real bubbles – they move around lightly and gracefully, refusing to stay put. Different themes/backgrounds for each level would be a nice enhancement, perhaps additional power ups and fruits for more variety and I wish the purple bubbles would be a mainstay instead of just showing up in some levels. And, just as popping bubble wrap is not complete without the crackling sound of air going out, Super Juicy recreates that satisfying feeling through its sound effects. You can opt to play your own music, but the in-game sound effects suffice.

Full of surprises, the gorgeous graphics, sounds and sophisticated and nuanced gameplay set Super Juicy apart. There are already plenty of great features streamlined into this gem of a game, and it’s a steal at its current price. On a final note: Super Juicy is severely underrated and under-appreciated – it’s one of the best games out there.

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App Summary
Title:Super JuicyDeveloper:Greg Hjelstrom
Reviewed Ver:1.3Min OS Req:3.0
Price:$0.99App Size:4.5 MB
  • great graphics and sounds
  • nuanced and sophisticated gameplay
  • plenty of power ups and bonuses
  • different and fun game modes
  • online leaderboard integration
  • high replay value
  • accelerometer based controls are not highlighted/maximised as part of gameplay
  • needs a little more variety in themes and backgrounds, fruits and power ups

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