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Mayan Puzzle (iPhone)

Review by Ben Briggs, August 18, 2010

iPhone integration (About)
  • Save state: No
  • iPod music: Yes
  • Status bar: No
  • Version: 1.0
  • Price as reviewed: 59p
  • by Mind Crew

Mayan Puzzle is, unsurprisingly, a puzzle game that has a luxuriously exotic theme to it; the production values here are nothing short of stunning. There’s 32 richly textured animated backgrounds, which do everything from evening thunder, rain and lighting to a warm sunrise over a lake and superbly composed music to fit with the theme. Even the menu screens have received the same craftsmanship and this overall results in a beautiful game filled with particle effects, bursts and glows galore; our screenshot gallery doesn’t do the game justice.

All of these special effects and presentational prowess just make the game fun to play, even if you’re merely moving tiles (left and right, but they will drop to fill a gap) around the board. Note that you aren’t simply swapping and so at least in three of the modes you can set up your board to create big scoring cascades. If you run out of tiles or simply want more you can swipe upwards from the bottom to add a new row in; you can do this until the tiles reach the top of the screen.

The fourth, classic mode, is basically 32 puzzles which give you a limited amount of moves in which to complete them; they are fairly challenging, too. But there’s a problem with the marathon mode; the games are never truly endless as Mayan Puzzle doesn’t resume a game if you’re interrupted; it’s not as critical on the other modes as your overall progress is saved but it is a let down that you can’t continue a long game.

If it weren’t for the attention to detail here the game could simply be dismissed as yet another matching puzzler; happily it is a very worthwhile choice for just 59p. Whether it’s playing quickfire time trial rounds, seeing how long you can last in the challenge mode or scratching your head over a solution for the classic mode we’re sure that you’ll enjoy this fun, expensive looking casual game that’s perfect for a shoestring budget.

Grade: B, Great

An expensive looking casual game that’s perfect for a shoestring budget; Mayan Puzzle is, in a word, surprising.

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