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New in Puzzle Games

3:00 PM on 04.23.2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition is still looking rad

Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition is still on the horizon, and it's looking better every time I see it. This newest video from Nintendo highlights some of the deeper aspects of the puzzler, including party memb...

Chris Carter

7:49 PM on 04.22.2015

Capcom pulls a bait and switch for newly announced Ghostbusters Puzzle Fighter

I was in the middle of dinner, eating some mashed potatoes, and someone texted me "hey, there's a new Puzzle Fighter coming out from Capcom." Holy shit! You're telling me that Capcom is resurrecting one of my favorite pu...

Chris Carter

3:00 PM on 04.22.2015

Review: MonsterBag

Animaniacs was all trios and duos (and one solo sexy rat thing) playing off each other for comedy and I couldn't help but think of the Buttons and Mindy skits while playing MonsterBag. Mindy would toddle off into harm's way, ...

Steven Hansen

12:00 PM on 04.22.2015

Final Fantasy bosses make an appearance in Puzzle & Dragons

Puzzle & Dragons' crossover power cannot be stopped. In addition to Squall and Ace making their way into GungHo's puzzler, more Final Fantasy characters are invading the game -- specifically, a few final bosses. Clou...

Chris Carter

12:45 PM on 04.21.2015

You had me at 'Snakebird'

A snake that is also a bird. Snakebird. How utterly adorable. The creator of Nimbus is back with Snakebird, a game about contorting narcoleptic creatures through 50-some puzzle worlds. It's releasing super soon: May 4, 2015 ...

Jordan Devore

12:15 PM on 04.21.2015

I'm trying to wrap my head around Circa Infinity

At a base level, I think I understand what's going on in Circa Infinity. While on the outside of a circle, the player character needs to get to a wedge to move inside. While on the inside of a circle, the player character ne...

Darren Nakamura

11:30 AM on 04.20.2015

Pokemon Shuffle keeps on shufflin', adds Safari event

When you're allowed to play it, Pokémon Shuffle is pretty fun. The new Safari event is a good excuse to boot it up as well -- then promptly turn the game back off after your hearts wear off in a minute or so. Whil...

Chris Carter

8:00 PM on 04.17.2015

Chip's Challenge and its long-lost sequel are coming to Steam in May

After finishing development of the classroom favorite Chip's Challenge, creator Chuck Sommerville got to work on a sequel and, two years later, finished it. But before the game was released, the rights were sold to a new owne...

Jordan Devore

1:00 PM on 04.17.2015

Trine 3 will use Steam Early Access to nail its new 3D gameplay

There are certain games I wouldn't expect to appear on Steam Early Access. Trine is one of them. The puzzle-platformer series has done tremendously well for itself on PC and consoles, and from what we've seen of the third tit...

Jordan Devore

5:00 PM on 04.02.2015

Peep the three roles in the new Affordable Space Adventures trailer

Affordable Space Adventures is coming out in one week, so developer KnapNok Games has released a new trailer for the cooperative sci-fi puzzle action title. In my time with it at PAX East, I found the use of the Wii U G...

Darren Nakamura

12:30 PM on 04.01.2015

A Serious Sam voice pack for The Talos Principle is weird and awesome

The Talos Principle is a puzzler that requires deep and philosophical thought. Serious Sam is, well, it's pretty much the exact opposite. That's why it's so excellent that the latter will be doing voicework for the ...

Brett Makedonski

1:00 PM on 03.24.2015

The Talos Principle bringing more deep thoughts with Road to Gehenna expansion

Players who took the time to really explore The Talos Principle might recognize the name Uriel. Though the base game is seen through the eyes of a particular simulation participant, evidence of others exists in the form of QR...

Darren Nakamura

10:30 PM on 03.21.2015

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker's amiibo functionality adds a small incentive to replay every level

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker launched its amiibo compatibility this week, and I've found a new reason to revisit the game. It's as simple as adding in a "Hide-and-Seek" mode, enabled by tapping the newly minted Toad amiibo ...

Chris Carter

10:30 AM on 03.17.2015

Pokémon Shuffle limiting Mega Lucario to a contest

Pokémon Shuffle is a pain to get through without constantly playing the waiting game, but if you're keen, Nintendo has been running occasional events to net special Pokémon. The newest promotion is a contest to ...

Chris Carter

10:00 PM on 03.16.2015

Oh, didn't see you there

We got a review code in today for a hidden-object game called Frankenstein: Master of Death. Darren expressed tentative interest, noting that it looks "terrible and fun at the same time?" Naturally, I went to investigate. Please send help.

Jordan Devore

7:30 PM on 03.13.2015

Magnetic: Cage Closed let me fling myself around with physics

"It's not a gravity gun; it's a magnet." Guru Games, developer of Magnetic: Cage Closed, stressed this to me at PAX East. It works like a real magnet, with fields radiating out in all directions, rather than affecti...

Darren Nakamura

1:00 PM on 03.11.2015

Tumblestone is the most intelligent 'match three' game I've ever played

The first impression of a game matters a lot at PAX. If people aren't intrigued almost immediately, they may never play the game at all. My first impression of Tumblestone was "oh cool another match-three game." I don't ...

Patrick Hancock

3:00 PM on 03.10.2015

Final GDC DLC launches with massive bugs, Mountain Dew shotgunning

Destructoid has launched its fifth and final GDC Daily Lunch Chronicles and interim cameraman Mike Cosimano again screwed up the sound. Instead of letting him get cute with ragtime music and title cards like last time, we're...

Steven Hansen

4:30 PM on 03.09.2015

Affordable Space Adventures is the Wii U experience I imagined in 2012

When Nintendo first unveiled the Wii U, my mind raced with ideas for games that could be created with the two-screen interface. A lot of the cool stuff that the DS did could be transferred to the big screen. Better yet, title...

Darren Nakamura

8:00 PM on 03.08.2015

GDC 15 DLC #4: Pita wraps, damn good fries and ragtime

We didn't have usual cameraman Kenny Redublo during our fourth lunch of GDC (see us dining with Dale here) and things went a bit awry. Our substitute cameraman Mike Cosimano had some fun with it, though, with some silent mov...

Steven Hansen

4:45 PM on 03.08.2015

GDC 15 DLC #3: Japanese katsu curry with Dale

Look on ye hungry and despair. Familiar face Dale North joined us for the third Daily Lunch Chronicles (watch the last one here). Back behind the camera, Kenny managed to empty his plate before both of us while shooting, but...

Steven Hansen



Planet of the Eyes is a treacherous place for Polaroid robots photo
Planet of the Eyes is a treacherous place for Polaroid robots
by Darren Nakamura

Crash landing on an alien planet is the worst. There's hazardous flora, deadly fauna, and even rock formations that seem to have some sort of blood lust. That just piles on top of the existential crisis of being a robot with an unknown purpose. Such is the existence on Planet of the Eyes.

I played through a couple of demo sections at PAX East. One showed off puzzles while the other demonstrated more action platforming. Both were rife with opportunities for robot death and dismemberment. At the very least, the planet is beautiful as it is repeatedly and mercilessly trying to kill me.

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1:30 PM on 03.05.2015

GDC 15 DLC #2: Oily hamburgers and Cranberries

The second lunch of GDC was much messier than the first, which you can watch here. Today (well, two days ago, actually) we went with an American staple, the "Hammed Burger," so named for the first woman who ever went totally...

Steven Hansen



Review: Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars photo
Review: Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars
by Darren Nakamura

A little more than four years ago, Nintendo released Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! on the original DS. It continued the series' focus on the miniature Mario robots, to the chagrin of fans of the platforming in the original. In our review, Jonathan Holmes said "It didn't make me feel much, or think much, or have much of a memorable effect on me at all."

Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars plays the same as Mini-Land Mayhem!, but with a few new features. It remains a puzzle game that acts as filler; it can be picked up and played just as easily as it can be put down and forgotten.

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Smash Bros. dev bringing blocky puzzler BOXBOY! to 3DS photo
Smash Bros. dev bringing blocky puzzler BOXBOY! to 3DS
by Steven Hansen

HAL Laboratories (Super Smash Bros., Mother) has been busying itself with a couple Kirby games recently, but it looks like someone over there had an idea for a lil puzzle game and rolled with it.

BOXBOY! (already released on the 3DS eShop in Japan) is minimal outside of its charming animations. It is black, white, and mostly made of squares. You can walk Qbby left and right in an overworld with a Ms. Pac-Man-esque bowtied Qbby trailing behind. Enter doors to start a world, most of which seem to be designed around a particular technique. Five worlds (with around seven levels each) were playable during my GDC demo. There are 17 in total.

Aside from running and jumping, Qbby can bud blocks from his body. Each level gives you a limit to how many blocks you can produce at any given time, while there is also an overall number of blocks you can use on a stage. Getting to the end while collecting one or two black crowns will net you a "perfect" rating (and give you currency to unlock fun extras).

When you start, you can produce one block from your body and usually throw it to use as a step to reach a higher platform. As the levels go on and the block limit gets higher, you use new techniques. One section is themed around using blocks as a hook. That is, you produce three stacked blocks straight up, followed one to the right, forming a hook atop your head. You can then latch that last block onto a high ledge and have Qbby contract up to that latched block like folding in one side of the accordion.

I'm fine with the absentee art style (and Qbby's dumb lil feet as you move the box back and forth), but I never felt stumped throughout the first five worlds. It was more relaxing than puzzling. Maybe that's the point. Or maybe the later worlds will combine the various techniques a bit more, or make it so the limit of blocks you can produce per stage actually feels like a restriction; I never ran out.

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Review: Pneuma: Breath of Life photo
Review: Pneuma: Breath of Life
by Brett Makedonski

Pneuma: Breath of Life is, through and through, a creationist tale. There's no theory of evolution, carbon dating, or Darwinism to cause debate. It's one god and the world that he brought into existence mere seconds earlier.

As it turns out, being the only inhabitant of a world is a dull affair.

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3:30 PM on 02.24.2015

Besiege brings its funny, sexual, weird medieval siege engines to Mac and Linux

AT-AT by Poroh I thought Besiege looked good based on the developer-made gifs and videos, but the game's community has elevated the title to new heights with its ingenious, often times so-wrong-they're-right medieval creation...

Jordan Devore



PC Port Report: Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty photo
PC Port Report: Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty
by Darren Nakamura

Like Chris, I had my first taste of Oddworld when it was new, back on the PlayStation in 1997. Abe's Oddysee and Abe's Exoddus were two of my favorite titles from that era, so when Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty was announced, I was pretty stoked to revisit the adventure through RuptureFarms and the surrounding areas.

To my chagrin, the PC version would not launch for many months after the PlayStation 4 version. At the very least, the wait is justified; New 'n' Tasty runs beautifully on my aging computer, and it features some of the bells and whistles that come with a Steam release too.

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Review: Hot Tin Roof: The Cat That Wore a Fedora photo
Review: Hot Tin Roof: The Cat That Wore a Fedora
by Jason Faulkner

I’ve really been delving into the indie scene lately. There’s a huge amount of games coming from smaller development studios, and I’ve found a few that really impressed me. When I heard that a “crime noir Metroidvania with a cat in a fedora” was available to review, I was all in. I mean Cave Story, Terraria, and Shovel Knight are indie titles that could all fall under the fairly vague “Metroidvania” genre and they’re some of the most critically acclaimed games of all time.

As I played Hot Tin Roof: The Cat That Wore a Fedora, I found myself alternately intrigued and absolutely disinterested. Some things were well executed, while others were distracting and annoying. Having such fond memories of exploring Castle Dracula and Zebes, I expected a title that took on their mantle to continue the gaming traditions they established, but what was here was sandpaper compared to those classics’ smooth marble.

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Review: htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary photo
Review: htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary
by Josh Tolentino

No, that isn't an encoding error up there in the headline: "htoL#NiQ" is indeed this PS Vita game's title, and is essentially a very stylish way to type "The Firefly Diary" in Japanese.

Whatever personal peculiarities led the team at Nippon Ichi to title their new game this way seem to extend to the game's design as well. htoL#NiQ marches to its own rhythm, and ends up being two things at once: a fascinating work of minimalism, and a needlessly difficult ordeal best enjoyed only by the most masochistic of flagellants.

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2:30 PM on 02.20.2015

Rez, Lumines creator working on puzzle RPG '18'

On a few separate occasions this year, I've been reminded that Rez exists and felt a flood of guilt after recalling how long it's been since I last played this ridiculously cool sequence (too long). A new Rez, or Rez HD on c...

Jordan Devore

9:30 AM on 02.20.2015

Final Fantasy x Puzzle & Dragons crossover unveiled

GungHo is now collaborating with Square Enix to unite the worlds of Final Fantasy and Puzzle & Dragons. That's about all we know at the moment, but we'll update you when there's more to tell. Final Fantasy x Puzzle & Dragons [GungHo Online via 4Gamer]

Kyle MacGregor

1:15 AM on 02.20.2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Mario Bros. Edition is damn sexy

Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition, the exciting new collaboration between Nintendo and GungHo Online, is coming west this May and I really couldn't be more excited. As a longtime "Pazudora" addict, it's somethi...

Kyle MacGregor



Very Quick Tips: Pokémon Shuffle photo
Very Quick Tips: Pokémon Shuffle
by Chris Carter

Pokémon Shuffle has an under-handed microtransaction system that heavily relies on making you wait to play, unless you pay.

But for some of you, casually picking up five games per day will be enough, and there is some fun to be had when you wade through all the nonsense. Here are some tips to help you stay free.

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Review: Pokémon Shuffle photo
Review: Pokémon Shuffle
by Chris Carter

Nintendo takes on the world of microtransactions with Pokémon Shuffle. What could go wrong?

A lot. 

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11:00 PM on 02.17.2015

Pokémon Shuffle's microtransactions are even worse than I thought

I just obtained my review copy for the upcoming 3DS match-three puzzler Pokémon Shuffle, and man, is it rough to get on-board with this microtransaction scheme. If you want the full rundown of what to expect you c...

Chris Carter

2:30 PM on 02.16.2015

What the hell?! Captain Toad has a spin attack!

Have you ever pushed through an annoying sequence without realizing that you were in fact "playing it wrong" and failing to grasp a concept or mechanic? I am guilty of this, but I'm struggling to think of an example newer tha...

Jordan Devore

6:00 AM on 02.15.2015

Some haikus about free puzzle platformer Symmetry

Flash game on NewgroundsLike VVVVVVSuperficially Mirror imagesForm platforms on either sideClimb to the portal Push boxes aroundAvoid deadly laser beamsFlip the gravity

Darren Nakamura

4:30 PM on 02.13.2015

Teddy Diefenbach's Alphabeats is up on Steam Greenlight

Last year when Alphabeats was originally announced, I lamented that it was only on iOS, with no word of an Android release. Though it might not have ever released for the superior mobile operating system, it looks like the r...

Darren Nakamura



Depression Quest co-creator looks for what's hidden in Disorder photo
Depression Quest co-creator looks for what's hidden in Disorder
by Patrick Lindsey

All art, or indeed even all communication, is a process of connecting with others through shared experience. Whether we’re trying to express a specific experience, or conversely, reveling in the knowledge that there's at least one other person out there who Gets Us, art can be as therapeutic to consume as it is to create.

The more ambiguous and less concrete the subject of the art in question, the more difficult a process this becomes. This is why love songs comprise about 99.9% of all popular music - we’ve all, at some point, been in love or, at very least, infatuated with someone, so the otherwise mawkish lyrics and saccharine melodies turn into our jam, because it hits us where we live.

The most difficult part of the human experience to capture externally is also one of the most essential: what goes on in our minds. We take our minds, and everything they bring along with them -- emotion, thoughts, memories -- completely for granted. It’s 2015 and while we’ve managed to successfully land a satellite on a comet and multiple robots on a planet 140 million miles away, we still have yet to crack what makes us tick.

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