(DSiWare)

FIZZ (DSiWare)

Game Review

FIZZ Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Jacob Crites

Fo Fizzle

Shocking update: a puzzle game was released on DSiWare this week. Non-sarcastic shocking update: it's actually pretty good. We know, we know, it's hard to get too excited about downloadable puzzle games these days, but even with stiff competition on the service, FIZZ still proves itself as a fun and affordable puzzler – even if it's slightly less than perfect.

FIZZ is simple to play, but somewhat difficult to explain. Essentially, the point of the game is to make a ring of electrical energy, but to do this you'll have to line up energy nodes of like colours. Energy nodes come in sets of four, so you'll have to rotate and swap them with adjacent nodes to make one continuous ring. The game throws in some clever twists into the mix that keep the action fast paced and interesting. The first of these twists comes from the age old rule, “don't cross the streams.” If two streams of electrical energy cross for too long, the nodes producing the stream will burn out, which means you'll have to fix them by rubbing them with the stylus. The game also makes the most out of its space setting – every so often an alien swarm, meteor or black hole will pop up and it's your job to fend them off before they do too much damage. If that all sounds confusing, don't worry – it's actually incredibly easy to grasp in practice. The controls, unfortunately, could use a little work.

Although conceptually accessible, and not horrible, the touchscreen controls lack the refinement necessary to consistently pull off everything the game throws your way. Rotating gets confused with swapping, swapping gets confused with rotating, rotating gets confused with fixing, and the list goes on and on. The game certainly isn't unplayable, but these inconsistencies can make it all a bit of a chore sometimes when the action gets intense. And while we like the addition of fighting off enemies, they're often a bit too “blue-shell”; which is to say that just as everything is going your way, they'll come out of nowhere and ruin your weekend. But, as mentioned, the control quirks really don't break the game – a testament to how fun the core mechanics really are.

There are two game modes to take part in, here: Time Attack and Conquest. In Time Attack you see how many energy rings you can make in the given time limit, while in Conquest you simply try to see how long you can go without getting a game over. Both are equally addicting in their own ways, but the lack of online leaderboards limits their long-term appeal.

As far as presentation is concerned FIZZ isn't exactly raising the bar, but then again, why should it? The appeal of the game lies strictly in its compelling gameplay. The sound, however, isn't as easy to dismiss, and its endlessly repeating loops get old fast.

Conclusion

FIZZ isn't quite up to the Art Style standard, but even with its control irritations it still manages to be an incredibly fun and addicting puzzle game. It's a shame that there aren't more options – online leaderboards would have been an ideal addition – but the game is still worth a look at 200 Points.

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User Comments (19)

Odnetnin

#2

Odnetnin said:

Looks like "No Fizzle" at a glance with bad eyesight. Pleasantly surprised it's actually good.

Bassman_Q

#5

Bassman_Q said:

So is it kind of like Bejeweled Twist?
I know I've seen that same rotating mechanic somewhere...

LuWiiGi

#7

LuWiiGi said:

Looks good, but the lack of online leaderboards or any extras is a turn-off for me.

flowerchild

#8

flowerchild said:

Def. worth 200 points because you can't get much today for $2.00. But I agree with the review. A little too much going on at the same time making it very "blah", imho.

Kristof

#9

Kristof said:

Very nice review. Thanks :))
I agree for the online leaderboard, but that's very much work a single people can not afford. And for 200 points ...

supercommando440

#12

supercommando440 said:

Multiple player profiles supported? If there are scoreboard for local players, can you at least enter your NAME or are the scores "nameless"?

WHen you review these games, provide MORE DETAILS please.

Kristof

#13

Kristof said:

Hi,
There are best scores for all modes (3 best scores for main mode, and 40*3 best scores for Time Attack mode). You can enter your name when you got an hiscore (3 letters, in old arcade style).
When you play, you got realtime message telling you "next score to beat in xxx points", and "you are 3rd/2nd/1st".
This is a puzzle game you play always in one game, so no need to have resume option. The main mode is 40 levels long, you can finish them in less than 2 hours (I like this mode, no impression to stay 2hours on game).

supercommando440

#15

supercommando440 said:

One more question: is there a RESUME button? After cranking through level and level can I pause, quit and save... then resume later? Or does this game skimp out and make you use the sleep function in order to pause and play player? Ya know, sometimes I like to take a break, and play something else, and then come back and resume, hence SLEEP mode doesn't cut it.

supercommando440

#17

supercommando440 said:

What does "instant" puzzle mean?
Someone mentioned there are 40 levels and it could take about 2 hours to complete. Do you get to SAVE at anypoint? If your round ends at level 10, can I continue or start a new round at the last completed level or do I have to start over again at level 1.

Zach

#18

Zach said:

@supercommando440 I think by "instant," Kristof meant that the pace is quite fast. I also think that by "no save/resume" he meant that you can neither save nor resume. I take it that the fast pace of the game makes saving and resuming less of an issue.

supercommando440

#19

supercommando440 said:

But if your goal is to "complete" 40 levels, it sounds like you have to do that in a single session, which could take 2 hours. Hence the reason I ask if there's a save or resume option, OR, if you can start a round from the last completed level. I don't care for games that must be completed in a single session or games that save no progression or no state. I like quick, fast paced games, especially ones I can play in short spurts that allow me to continue from where I left off, i.e. between rounds. Or games that allow me to choose the starting level. Ex: if I've completed 20 of 40 levels, I'd like to be able to start a round at level 21, not at level 1 and work my way back up all over again.

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