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Towerbloxx Deluxe XBLA Review

13/11/2009 Family Teen Gamer Review
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Towerbloxx Deluxe XBLA

Towerbloxx Deluxe

Format:
XBLA

Genre:
Shooting

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Towerbloxx is a lovely new game on Xbox 360 Live Arcade. Combining simplistic and very addictive gameplay, a rounded, nice visual style and an all-round great experience. Stack tower segments on top of each other to build towers and get more and more people to live in your town. Think SimCity crossed with Tetris. Towerbloxx on 360 is one of the best games to come from XBLA yet.

Now, I have to admit that at first I was a bit skeptical about Towerbloxx. Isn't this just going to be another boring block-stacking game like you can find a hundred times over on the Internet? If I wanted to do stacking, I told myself, I would apply for a job at Tesco. I could not have been more wrong- Towerbloxx is almost unique in the fact it takes a completely boring and simple idea and makes it brilliant. Remind you of Tetris? It did for me, and that's no bad thing. It's very important not to be put off by the simple premise of Towerbloxx. For example, after introducing the game to my brother, we had the following conversation.

"It's rubbish"
"What? Not it's not!"
"Yes it is- look at it."
"Ah, but don't judge a book by its cover."
"But it's not a book, it's a game!
"Same thing."

Despite my brotherís criticism, it'll be obvious to anyone who plays Towerbloxx for more than two minutes that it isn't rubbish. Quite the opposite. I've seen tower-building games before, but none nearly as smooth and well built as Towerbloxx. Its simple and easy gameplay and all-round brilliant style make it a clear winner in any arcade/puzzle game category.

Towerbloxx spices things up a bit with unlockable parts, different building areas and various tower types, getting progressively higher and harder to build. The beautiful simplicity of this, and more importantly, how well it works, had me gripped.

However, Towerbloxx is slightly trickier than it may seem. To a degree, it's about the patterns you place your towers in, because certain towers can only be built beside other towers. This makes it more about trying to get the maximum amount of space from your map. This strategic side to the game introduces an element of thinking and forward-planning, but without bogging it down with too much town planning.

I, of course, was fairly rubbish at planning where to put my towers, opting instead to build my cities in the shapes of smiley faces! Of course, this is basically what Towerbloxx is about- having simple, unrestrained fun!

There's just something compelling about judging when to release your tower-piece onto your inevitably already swaying tower.

It sports lovely back-drops, interesting buildings and even near-by events like balloon rides to watch as you play. Having your Xbox 360 avatar as the crane operator is just one of the simple but brilliant touches that makes Towerbloxx so great. Like all the best simple games, it's also ridiculously addictive. It really, really is. There's just something compelling about judging when to release your tower-piece onto your inevitably already swaying tower that has a certain re-play element to it, so expect to be replaying it for many, many hours after you've finished it.

Towerbloxx Deluxe ticks all the boxes, and I loved it.

The developers have put in just enough variation to keep you playing, just to see what the next tower is, or to try to unlock that last balcony piece. This is a perfect game to play after a stressful day, or even during one! There's something strangely relaxing about slowly and carefully building a perfect mega-tower, and it's that makes Towerbloxx a perfect chill-out game. It's one of those games that it's nice just to play on-and-off.

Towerbloxx Deluxe ticks all the boxes, and I loved it. As a result, I can say with certainty that it will keep any gamer, no matter how skeptical, entertained for hour upon hour. Now, if only I could get that balcony on my last green tower perfect.

Written by Rowan Brown

You can support Rowan by buying Towerbloxx Deluxe



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Rowan Brown writes the Teen Gamer column.

"I write about my favourite games from a younger person's perspective. It's often surprising how different this ends up to other more grown up reviews."


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