At times inspiration runs dry even for me, and the first draft for this versus review was created about a month ago. My idea was to take the flip in Flipside and bitFLIP, and basically make a flipping comparison of the two flippers. Initial impressions of both games were flipping good, but as time went by both have perished into boredom and apathy. And the lesson I see in this is worth repeating: games based on gimmicks seldom succeed in the long run.
In Flipside blocks fall down, and you flip them by tapping them. The aim is to create matches to remove them, while at the same time avoiding matches on the back of the blocks. While a block falls you can move it sideways to place it wherever you want to. The gameplay goes from too easy to too hard within a couple of minutes in both survival and versus the computer. It is simply too hard to keep track of both matches on the front and back of the blocks when the game picks up speed, and especially when the computer mess up my plans. My wife had the same impression so it is not just me being poor at matching symbols under pressure. There is also a puzzle mode that is quite good, and the mode I spent most time with. All blocks have to be removed in a limited number of moves and flips. Versus mode by Bluetooth is available, but after just a couple of rounds me and my wife concluded that it was more confusing than fun.
In bitFLIP you have to make matches on a board using a pair of handcuffs. These can be either swiped to move the two pieces or tapped to flip the two pieces. I found the controls to be really hard to get to grip with, and quite frankly I have never managed to make it feel precise or fast enough. Three different levels of difficulty, and three game modes can’t save the game from being a bore. The controls aren’t good enough to satisfy those who have played games such as Bejeweled 2, Trism and Chuzzle. In the reviewed version there is no online functionality, and perhaps the promised update will make bitFLIP a bit more interesting. Local multiplayer using Bluetooth and Wi-Fi is available though, but I can’t find anyone interested in bitFLIP.
Both games lack polish in one major area. Flipside looks good with bright colourful graphics, and clearly visible blocks. Instead it lacks bigtime when it comes to the sound. There is no music, and the sound effects are annoying. You can play your own music though. In bitFLIP the relationship is flipped. bitFLIP has got really good music filled with energy, and it is the reason why I kept playing even though the controls felt so darn iffy. The graphics in bitFLIP is jagged, and looks really unpolished. Even the circular buttons you flip look jagged and hurried.
Both these games come out as unfinished products, and both are in the end too much about gimmicky gameplay than polish and quality. Neither of them are terrible, and Flipside might be perfect for the casual gamer who like to do the puzzles. bitFLIP on the other hand might be something for those looking for some nice music by Robert Clouth accompanying the wonky handcuff gameplay.
Final Flipping Rating
Seller: HOWARD N HUNLEY
Seller: Hands-On Mobile