Puzzle Craft 2

Puzzle Craft 2I am nearly up to level 100 on this game . It is fun, challenging and really makes me think. You cannot solve things in 5 minutes and you really have to work on strategy across the 5 villages at this level. I have to get a blackberry to be able to progress to the new and last village. You cannot bash and smash your way through this game. You cannot buy your way out and you cannot take the easy road. You have to work with your brain to sort though the possibilities and work out a way of achieving what you are focused on at that point. I work all the villages at different times because some bring resources I need, some rewards, some build up the points levels and then the main village is where I am still trying to complete all the buildings to move on. That and the blackberry. It is a great game for people who like lots of challenges and who like to puzzle! The swamp is awful. No matter how much you install swamp cleaners it never improves. That icky stuff still gets you and your resources. It makes you realise you can be totally inattentive at times . While you are looking at one thing , you don’t notice the swamp is claiming another. Ditto the moles in the mine. They are horrible. My solution now , since I have more money, is just to blow them up because they can really wreck your board when you are trying to get resources in the mine. I don’t think I’ll ever collect all the moose because of the swamp, but then again, there are other things I thought I’d never do in this game and I end up thinking my way through. The game plays with you. It will reward you generously for trying your hardest and achieving something good and it will force you to reshape your approach so that you are more successful in your strategies. I love the water puzzles. At this level they bring some interesting configurations you have to manage but the opportunities are there to apply yourself. The graphics in the game are really good. Much thought has gone into the images, the characterisation and effective visual literacy. That’s the thing. You do have to pay attention. You do have to notice and you do have to read the information about the plants and animals so that you can devise ways and means of progressing. In this game research is important and you have to manipulate the data you have to get good outcomes. I am now regularly getting the  tools from the magic portal so that has been helping a lot. You have to build up those points so that you can. I have also liked seeing the videos of what other games there are on the iPad. It is one way you can get some free rewards but it is also a way of seeing how much the iPad games graphics have improved and the selections of games. This game has just got better and better the more I have played it. I have never felt like I am doing the same ol’ same ol’ and I have never felt like it is too easy or too hard. There is a good balance. There is also an opportunity to work it out for yourself. Some things in the game are just there and are not explained. It is not a nanny game. It makes you stand on your own two feet and think for yourself. Sometimes you just have to work out for yourself how to get something for get rid of something. I like that. There is no easy fix because I have a brain and I can use it. Love that approach in this game.

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Puzzle Craft 2

Puzzle Craft 2I love this game. It is very demanding in a good way. You have to think, plan and puzzle. I have four villages now and the fourth one added such a good level of complexity that it really put the game into a whole new arena which created an even better use and development of cognitive skills. It’s rewarding. When you achieve something, you really feel like you have achieved it. I have been confronted more than once with those awful weeds. Every time I nail them there is a great feeling of satisfaction. With the wolves it’s the challenge of getting rid of them without resorting to shooting them. With the rats…mostly I ignore them. It is good to be at the bit where I can collect them with grass. The fourth village has brought me a water puzzle game. At first it seems to be as bizarre as anything . Yes, you have to use your brain to get it going and to understand it. I still don’t really know what it’s about. I just do it and follow my instinct and that seems to be working. It’s a bit addictive catching fish and locating spices. The challenge is the 4 moves restriction on the boat. This is why Puzzle Craft 2 has become my favourite game. It changes and challenges. It gives you enough information and help to keep you going but it forces you to participate and actually play it in a comprehensive way.  Every step of the way you have to think it out. I am running raw materials and resources across 4 villages so I have to work out which mines and farms to work, which resources to have where, which raw materials are better sourced in which village.  If I am buying I have to work out whether it is cheaper to buy the raw materials or the ready made resource. It is a game for a brain which likes to be busy and a game for those who like to manage across a range of expectations, requirements, demands , materials and assets. You can’t just play it as such and bash your way through the game. Some really good challenges arrive unexpectedly and you have to think them out. At one stage I thought I would never get to my fourth village. Even had I wanted to I could not have bought my way in. You can use your real money to short circuit the play if you want to but a lot of the game requires you to look at other things besides the fact that easy cash will solve everything answer. I love that. There are things like time, patience and strategy. I had to work hard to get into the fourth village and had to let time do the work. For the fifth village I already have the requirements but that is not to say it will be a straightforward move when the time comes. The game can surprise you like that. It’s not a game you get done. It’s one you sit and enjoy for a little while. It’s not stressful. It is absorbing.

Puzzle Craft 2

PuzzleCraft2I completed the 50 levels of Puzzle Craft and got into my Imperial Castle. I can still play the game if I want to but I have achieved all there is to achieve. I thought I’d give Puzzle Craft 2 a go. Initially it was a shock because I had gone so far in Puzzle Craft and had enjoyed the freedom of it. I was back to having to build up resources and currency and Puzzle Craft 2 is far more complex. It seemed a bit kiddie at first but it’s not. There is so much you have to manage and keep your eye on. For a busy brain which likes to puzzle this is the game. There are so many elements and strategies . The game puts in challenges and it works across different villages this time. I have completed the second village and have to gather the resources to move on to the third village. I packed everything up without realising that. Not to worry. It’s not easy to work everything out and some of it you stumble across or the game gives you a bit of help. It’s certainly a generous game in terms of offering supplies and bonuses. I hate the notion that you can pay real cash to get yourself out of every single difficult situation. In my opinion it’s a bad lesson to teach and defeats the purpose of gaming. Games make squillions of dollars, it’s true, but cash ought not be the driving force because there is so much teaching and learning which can occur with a game and that to me is the most important thing. If I just buy my way out I have gained nothing.

 

I have got myself going and am currently stuck because there is no way I am going to be able to get 150 iron out of the mine in one hit. The puzzle board has 36 squares and not all of them are filled with iron. That is a tough challenge. I have learned to make tools on the first farm to save the resources on the second farm for the other tools. I am not sure why buildings provide free tools when they are not added to the count. You are strictly limited on the amount of tools you can have in this game unless you pay for special packages with game currency which you can build up quite well. Those tools are added to the stock pile. Sometimes I just play the boards without the tools. I try to focus on the one thing I have to do but it doesn’t quite work out that way because you have other things to keep in mind and that is where strategy and planning come in handy. I hate the long chains but the game thrives on them. I preferred the shorter chains of the first game. You can shorten the chains by hiring workers but that comes slowly when you don’t want to keep paying out more real money. There is plenty of variety in game play and it’s a game which keeps you challenged. It will change as I go up the levels and I look forward to discovering whether I enjoy it as much as I ended up enjoying Puzzle Craft. The graphics are really good and the level of organisation in the game is good. There is a really comprehensive review of it on GameZebo.

Hay Day

Duck Salon

Love the duck salon!

I love the duck salon. It is very amusing animation which has been well thought out and executed. The fishing area is really nice. A calm area. Initially I took a little while to learn how to fish but it’s not hard. Practice makes perfect! I like the lobster farm too because that is funny. I have to juggle everything to make sure I have enough bait and equipment to get my supplies right and then I  have to take all the timing into consideration. All that takes thinking and planning. I’d love to be able to decorate the area a bit . As it stands, I just visit. The town I have grown quite a lot and have had a chance to decorate it quite a bit. I’d love to be able to put in some fruit trees and a few plots to grow some plants just to give it a more lived in look and have a bit more flexibility with landscaping. The town is non productive . It does use a lot of resources, however. Again, it forces you to think and plan. The riverboats come and go and I fill them or not. I am over being one thing short of a full riverboat. I either fill it or I don’t. Sometimes I part fill it and then those who help me get points and I get points for what I have accomplished. Insane requests like 11 sugar or 11 cream for one container deserve the contempt they get. Were the sugar and dairy facilities able to produce those amounts comfortably , then fair enough. As it stands it would break your production more often than not and the domino effect onto other resources is something which has to be considered. A thinking game full of challenges and confrontation. In the end, it is a game. I have a lot of fun playing it and don’t go down the negative paths. That means I am finally loving the Pinto horse I had to wait so long to get. The only decent horse there! She has learnt naughty tricks from one of my other horses and occasionally walks through walls and hay bales to the outside! You can be harvesting trees and the horses will walk straight through it like magic. They are on a mission and they are fully focussed!

Hay Day

Hay DaySeriously, what were they thinking? This is a game with superb graphics and graphics capabilities. The graphic artists have real skills…and a sense of humour. This is not funny. It’s hideous. I won a floating balloon cow. It offends my aesthetic sensibilities so I put it on the farm to show you and now it is safely hidden away in storage. In this game you do not have the option of selling unwanted, tasteless items. So the cow is locked away forever. That’s a shame when it’s so good taking part in the global competitions or spinning the wheel. A cow like that mars your day. Apart from that I am going really well on this game and it never ceases to amaze me how much it can make me think. It poses some interesting dilemmas and forces me to be far more flexible in my thinking that I ever thought possible. I solved my mountain of dead trees and shrubs and realised you get rid of the dead trees and replant  them then you either don’t harvest them or you harvest bits of them and keep them alive. When possible you can harvest them fully and replace them. There is always a shortage of saws and axes and it does impinge on the game. I am now swamped by dead nectar bushes…the white daisy bushes in the picture. Some were nice for decorating but I am now using good land to house dead nectar bushes. They build up quickly so there is no real solution. They ought to last for longer or if you are running hives you need access to more axes. That simple. No, it’s not. You cannot keep hiring Tom at 15 diamonds a day to clean up. It solves the problem temporarily. You can choose not to make honey but a solution ought not be a deficit model. I extended my lobster farm and that is fun and I have my duck salon and that kept everyone amused and entranced at Christmas. It is so clever, funny and well thought out. So why the hideous balloon cow?

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