A sweet puzzle game that pays homage to an arcade classic.
If you're a plucky indie start-up, and you're wondering why no-one's interested in your amazing new game, here's an easy shortcut: insert the words 'Qix-inspired' somewhere in your press release, sit back, and watch the coverage roll in.
It doesn't even have to be true. You could just create a fantastic backstory about tormented badgers and their ongoing territorial struggle with neighboring hedgehogs.
In CurveBot's case, developers Elpixo has come up with a textbook example by creating a weird robot thing on valiant a mission to rescue his fiery friends from the dreaded drones.
What that means in practice, of course, is the need to carve away chunks of the landmass until only a few per cent surrounding them is left.
If you've ever played Qix, or the many millions of games that want to be its friend, you'll know that you start off on the perimeter, and have to essentially draw a line from one of the edges to another to claim a chunk. It works slightly differently here, though. Rather than claim land, once you carve a slice off it drops away, leaving you with an ever-decreasing blob of land to skirt around.
But while Qix exists in an abstract top-down view befitting a video game from 1982, CurveBot views the action from a comparatively lavish third-person 3D.
This turns out to be both a good and a bad thing, sadly. Good in the sense that it looks rather lovely, bad in that your field of view is hopelessly limited, and in a game where drones are constantly trying to halt your progress, not being able to judge exactly when something is about to crash into your line is a bit of a deal-breaker.
At first, it's just a mild irritation, but the further you progress into this 60-level affair, the more aggressive the drones become and the more it starts to aggravate you when you can't see what to avoid. If the imminent update does indeed address this, this could be the 3D Qix your perverted imagination has been hankering after all these years.
Used under license from Eurogamer.
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), and iPad. Requires iOS 3.1 or later.
What's Hot: Qix inspired play, attractive 3D visuals, universal support, 60 levels.
What's Not: Bothersome perspective.