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First Impressions: Block Factory (3DS eShop)

Posted by James Newton

Bricking it

Upcoming 3DS eShop title Block Factory — from the makers of Pyramids — is trying to do something a little different with the puzzle genre. Instead of sticking resolutely to one kind of block-dropper, you can create your own take on the genre with its built-in creative tools.

While the game comes with four preset games that ape famous puzzlers like Tetris and Columns, the real interest comes in creating your own puzzle game — with limitations, of course. You choose a theme for the background and blocks, determine which shapes will appear and finally set the rules. Want to score points for connecting nine like-coloured blocks, or building a vertical or horizontal line? It's not just the overriding score conditions you can change: you can alter whether blocks drop more quickly or immediately when you push Down, whether you can swap or turn blocks and if they're affected by gravity or stick rigidly in place.

Creating your own puzzles is straightforward enough but there's little visual feedback during the process: whereas Pullblox makes it clear what your puzzles will look like, and therefore behave, your Block Factory settings are just flags until you click saved. You get a short preview of your game before heading into it, so you know its scoring conditions before you start to play, but when coupled with the five-letter limit on names you might struggle to tell one game from another. A minor gripe — and one that could be easily rectified by the time the game comes out.

Playing your own game is all well and good, but Enjoy Gaming has also included the ability to share your puzzles as QR codes or via StreetPass, which should prove useful for when your inspiration is lacking.

Our time with this Block Factory so far has been enjoyable without really excelling: creating your own falling block puzzles doesn't have the same appeal as making a Pullblox as there's no solution. You're creating variations on a theme — admittedly a hugely popular one — and it remains to be seen how much longevity there is in making multiple falling block puzzles.

Still, if it comes in at the right price Block Factory should still find an audience. While it's unlikely to kill off all other falling block puzzles from hitting the eShop, it'll hopefully have a bit more longevity than your usual match-three effort.

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User Comments (24)

chewytapeworm

#1

chewytapeworm said:

I didn't realise this had the ability to create your own puzzles! Judging by the videos I've seen it looked like just another middle of the road Columns-esque rip-off. This could end up being quite an unexpected success!

Squiggle55

#2

Squiggle55 said:

Hey I like the sound of this game. And I'm always happy to see streetpass included that's great.

brandonbwii

#3

brandonbwii said:

If this game is around the price as Pyramids, I might pick this up. Especially if it gets a decent review.

Geonjaha

#4

Geonjaha said:

Well having Tetris with the ability to change graphics for blocks and background just isnt good enough to warrant a purchase on my part. Being able to change scoring conditions just seems cheap - like the developers couldnt decide on their own game modes that worked well. Because of all of this, and the fact that Pyramids dissapointed me enough for me to delete it from my 3DS, I wont be getting this. ;)

HanuKwanzMasBif

#7

HanuKwanzMasBif said:

Interesting. If it's less than 3 dollars then I'll get it. One thing that bothers me is that whole mouse-and-cheese aesthetic. I've always hated that in cartoons, games, etc.
Plus there can only be so many different combinations, it seems like it could get bland fast.

WolfRamHeart

#11

WolfRamHeart said:

It looks like an interesting game. If the price is right then I will pick it up. Any idea as to when we might expect to see this show up on the eShop?

C-Olimar

#12

C-Olimar said:

It seems a pretty basic game. If it can differentiate itself from Tetris 3DS, and is £3.60 or less, I'm sure to get it.

eviLaTtenDant

#13

eviLaTtenDant said:

I don't think this will let you create anything that's really fun and different from Tetris, Columns or Puyo Pop.
While it may be overly utopian to want the swiss army knife of a puzzle editor it's hard not to dream about it. Imagine if you would be able to recreate games like Dr. Mario, Bust a Move, Bombliss, Bejeweled, Panel de Pon, Meteos, Lumines, Puzzle Quest, all the modes found in the newer Tetris titles, ...
All with the option to create your own objective based puzzle stages and time limited modes and with the best and most poular modes permanently playable online.
Not possible i know. But i'd want Block Factory to at least be a bit more of that puzzler's wet dream than the quite shallow game it seems to be..

Linkuini

#14

Linkuini said:

I really like the idea. Any possibility to make your own multiplayer modes? That would be another step in the right direction.

Ren

#16

Ren said:

I might have been interested if this didn't have any association with that Pyramids game. Pyramids was just.... just.. I'm falling asleep thinking about it.

Ren

#19

Ren said:

@rayword45
This isn't made by Nintendo, it's made by Enjoy gaming. (or published, no developer is listed so we have to assue they also made it) I doubt Nintendo is interested in making games for other people to publish, since I "enjoy gaming" alot more with titles made by Nintendo. This game looks to be another attempt at puzzles with nothing original involved at all.

famestephy09

#20

famestephy09 said:

You wouldn't catch me downloading it unless its free. Which is 100% not the case so yeah not worth any money from what it looks like. but you never know. maybe it will be a good game. though it wont compare to pushmo.

XCWarrior

#23

XCWarrior said:

Sounds like a lot of fun. Love puzzle games, would love to be able to create my own. Hope the final review is a good one.

grumblegrumble

#24

grumblegrumble said:

I got it today, seems good, but need to tinker with its create modes some more. For the price I think it's ok so far, but awaiting more gameplay to rule my verdict ;)

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