The ges­tures that count

Mac Format - - CONTENTS -

£2.29 De­vel­oper Tri­ada Stu­dio, tri­adas­tu­

Works with iPhone, iPod touch, iPad Ver­sion 1.0.1 Age 4+

If you have ever sat man­gling your fin­gers into strange and mys­te­ri­ous forms so their shadow on the wall vaguely re­sem­bles a rab­bit, you’re prob­a­bly go­ing to like Shad­ow­matic.

Rather than your fin­gers, here you get float­ing ab­stract shapes. Th­ese can be spun and ro­tated by one- and two-fin­ger ges­tures, with the aim be­ing that their shad­ows might start to re­sem­ble some­thing vaguely recog­nis­able.

How­ever, bar the ini­tial tu­to­rial lev­els, Shad­ow­matic isn’t ter­ri­bly forth­com­ing about what each shadow should be. Level sets have a theme, but be­yond that you’re on your own. When you’re ma­nip­u­lat­ing only one shape, ev­ery­thing’s easy enough, but when you’ve got two or three to con­tend with, what was a noodly, re­lax­ing game can be­come testing – even try­ing.

Un­for­tu­nately, it sheds el­e­gance. There’s un­gainly but­ton-prod­ding to switch be­tween the dif­fer­ent shapes, and the need to hold the but­ton to re­ar­range shapes in re­la­tion to each other. In the­ory, a light me­ter shows how close to the so­lu­tion you are. But it proves largely un­help­ful, and the game of­ten de­mands too much pre­ci­sion, want­ing you to nudge one part of a seem­ingly com­plete sil­hou­ette just a few pix­els along to get to the so­lu­tion.

In mit­i­ga­tion, there is a hints sys­tem, but that’s cur­rency based, and it’s easy to burn through earn­ings from com­plet­ing lev­els. Nat­u­rally, you can top up via IAP.

And yet, de­spite all the quib­bles we’ve stated, we just kept com­ing back. The at­mo­spheric au­dio and vi­su­als en­thral, and the con­cept seems ideal for larger iOS de­vices. So we ad­vise to just be a bit pa­tient, and if you do get stuck, find an on­line guide to dis­cover what you’re aim­ing for – the jour­ney’s still just as much fun. Craig Gran­nell

Beau­ti­ful but flawed. Our rec­om­men­da­tion comes with the caveat that this is very much a game for the more pa­tient.

Oh, the fun you can have with the abil­ity to lev­i­tate ob­jects and a torch.

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