Ever been to a restaurant or doctor's office and found one of those wooden Peg Solitaire boards just lying around? The little triangular board where you hop pegs over each other? The degree to which you compulsively feel a need to pick it up and play it rather than fiddle with your phone is indicative of the interest you'll have for PEG SOLITAIRE on the eShop. It gets far, far more complex than anything you'll just pick at while bored in a restaurant, though.
PEG SOLITAIRE presents players with various playing fields filled with pegs and one empty space. A peg can hop over a single other peg and land in that empty space, which eliminates the peg it jumped over from the board. Players have to jump over pegs until only a single peg remains, and depending on the shape of the board that can get difficult in a hurry. As in, on the first board.
There's nothing special about the presentation here, but the controls work well. The pegs are large on the GamePad, which makes them easy to select with the stylus and move around. The pegs also snap to the next available spot if you hover anywhere near it, so there's no fussing involved in getting your move to work correctly. Even if you do mess up there's an undo button that will let you go back a move. This is handy, given that a single wrong move will eventually make the board unsolvable, but it doesn't let you undo multiple moves. It helps, but not a lot.
PEG SOLITAIRE presents players with 14 different puzzles to solve, each laid out in various ways to provide new challenges. They'll keep players busy for a while as they're all challenging, and the game keeps track of how many moves you made so you can attempt to do better on future runs on a given board. The only downfall is that the same tile is open every single time, so once you find a good solution to the puzzle there's really nothing more to be gained from playing it. Having a valid but random open tile might have added a little more replay value to the game.
The music is quite catchy and upbeat, which will help divert some of the puzzle rage you may be feeling after messing up a given board for the tenth time. The visuals themselves aren't all that impressive, though, offering a very simple experience - don't expect a flourish when you beat a board, as the game is quite sparse. You'll be seeing a lot of green pegs, brown boards, grey backgrounds, and little else.
At its asking price, PEG SOLITAIRE is cheaper than a set of real-life peg solitaire boards. At the same time, a real-world one might provide a little more variety with the ability to leave whichever space you want empty when you start the puzzle. If you enjoy complex brainteasers with simple rules, then, this will be a fun but limited way to while away some time. The Wii U's GamePad is far more expensive if you break it out of frustration than a little wooden toy is, though.