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Doodle God

Score: 88%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: JoyBits, LTD
Developer: JoyBits, LTD
Media: Download/1
Players: 1 - 3 (online)
Genre: Puzzle/ Simulation

Graphics & Sound:

Over the last five or so years, there have been various releases of Doodle God on other systems. Finally, thereís a version that you can play on your PC available on Steam. The game is simple in concept, but provides many hours of entertainment.

While I had not (until now) played Doodle God before, I have played a similar game on my phone called Alchemy. It just has pictures of the various elements that you create. I was expecting Doodle God to be similar, but I found that it is much more vibrant and detailed. Instead of just having pictures of elements when other elements are combined, you have an entire world to build. Granted, not every element is important enough to be put on the map, but a whole lot of them are. Eventually, you have a full Earth complete with aliens in the atmosphere. Itís really quite well done and beautiful to see.

The only voicework in Doodle God is a single narrator, who is more or less omniscient. He definitely sounds omniscient. Iím not sure what it is about the voice, but it is perfect for a figure describing your god work. Youíll mostly just get spoken words on the cutscenes, in between levels and such. The background music fits well too. It just seems to flow nicely with the game.


Gameplay:

Doodle God has a Main Story for you to play, but there are also other modes as well. The Main Story is made up of four episodes. You have to get 100 of the elements in Episode One to go on to Episode Two. This does not mean that all the ? on your groups will be filled. It just depends on which elements you create. For example, I managed to miss Dust until Episode Two, but I had Quicksilver very early. You might also have a different set of elements from a friend playing as you just have to get 96 elements (plus the four you started with for 100 total), not a specific list of elements. You unlock Episode Three when you have 140 elements.

Once you get to Episode Three, youíll find some groups missing, like all the mythical creatures. You also will not be able to make them with the previous combinations. Personally I miss the dragon, but I just like dragons. You will also find that things that wouldnít mix before, like Glass and Water, will now mix. This means if you were just combining every element with every other element to see what worked, youíll have to work back through them again.

I only needed 197 elements total to get to Episode Four. I didnít have any ? on any category left. Episode Four gives you Magic as a new element. You also get back all of those magical things that they took away for Episode Three. However, you will notice all of your technical things are gone this time. One thing that really threw me off is that Human was moved out of the human group and down to a races group. It took me a bit to find it! The weapons were also moved to their own group. The fire group is gone completely and fire moved to the yin/yang group. I really didnít like things moving around that much, but I guess it had to be done. It was just difficult to find things since I was already used to how they were before.

Other than the Main Story, youíve got Quests, Artifacts, Puzzles, Tournament, and Encyclopedia. For Quests, you will need to create elements to accomplish whatever task they need. For example, the first one is help Santa make presents. Once you beat that one, you will unlock another. Some Quests, like Devil vs. God, are unlocked as you complete things in Story Mode. Artifacts are historical items that you will need to create based on elements that you have unlocked during Story Mode. In Puzzles, you are given a set amount of elements to work with and you are trying to make a specific item. Once you combine elements in Puzzles, they disappear, so you have to be careful and get the right order. Tournaments start every day. You can choose to compete in them as much or as little as you wish. You will be playing against other players in the real world. The Encyclopedia has a list of all the elements that you have discovered and random quotes about them. I love the quotes as they are amusing. The one under Death Metal says "We have no quote about this." I found that entertaining. On any element, if you click the "W" on the bottom right, itíll take you to the Wikipedia article pertaining to that subject (even Death Metal).


Difficulty:

You have everything you need for Doodle God from the beginning of the game. The hard part is figuring out what to combine to make new elements. You can take a brute force approach and just combine everything with everything, but since things change from episode to episode, you will have to restart that approach every episode. You can use a bit of logic to work things out, but things like Alcohol (Fire + Water) arenít exactly logical until you remember that alcohol is nicknamed fire water. You can always just randomly guess and put together the things that you would mix if it were up to you. However you do it, if youíre stuck, there are hints that you can use. The hints will regenerate over time or you can buy more for a small fee (of real money).

If youíre like me and playing on several different computers, youíll find your life infinitely easier if you make use of the Sync button. It allows you to upload progress to the servers so you can play at multiple places. Itís really nice in that when you click the sync button, you can see how much you have discovered on your local game and how much you have discovered on the serverís game, so youíll be able to easily see which is the newest.


Game Mechanics:

Doodle God is very easy to play. You simply click on one element and drag it on top of another, or you can click on one element and then click on another. Either way, the game will try to mix them for you. When you have to put together Artifacts, you will need to drag the appropriate element into the boxes for the Artifact. They can go in any order. Tournaments are a bit like the Artifacts. You simply drag the elements that will make the element pictured into the right box. The one thing I have noticed that frustrates me is that if you put an element in a box, you canít take it out. If it is the wrong one, you can replace it with the right one and that will count just fine, but you canít reuse that first one you put in there in the place that it is supposed to go. Basically, be careful where you put things! The rounds only last 30 seconds, so you can play quite a number of times.

Doodle God is a very simple game to play, but that doesnít mean that it isnít addictive. Youíll find yourself about to fall asleep and then itíll hit you what elements might work together. Itís one of those games that gets in the back of your mind and you find yourself playing it a lot more than you thought you would. If youíre looking for an addictive puzzle game with untold hours of play time, check out Doodle God today!


-Cyn, GameVortex Communications
AKA Sara Earl

Minimum System Requirements:



OS: Windows 7 or Higher, CPU: AMD Atholon 64X2 Dual-Core 4000+ or better / Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0 GHz or better, RAM: 2 GB, Graphics: ATI X1800 or better /nVidia 7800 or better / Intel 4100 or better. 512 MB Video Ram, DirectX: Version 11, Hard Drive: 1 GB free
 

Test System:



OS: Windows 8.1, CPU: Intel Core i7-3630QM 2.4 GHz, RAM: 16 GB, Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 730M, Hard Drive: 400 GB free

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