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Speedthru: Potzol's Puzzle review

Tetris meets Hole In The Wall in ancient times

Speedthru: Potzol's Puzzle is a bit like ludicrous BBC programme Hole In The Wall, only with Tetris-style blocks in place of Vanessa Feltz in a silver jump suit. You have to rotate a block and move it through the air to fit it through gaps in a seies of walls in three puzzling worlds.

Except it's not really a block, but a Guardian who has to collect hearts in a bid to restore Creatl, the God of Creation whose heart has been stolen by Kaotl, the God of Destruction. This is a tale that's told through a tedious intro sequence that has none of the charm of the wonderful Pullblox. It's a bit of a shame because once Speedthru gets going, it's hard to put it down.

Those hearts are worth paying attention to as you'll need to collect them if you're to get high scores and gold medals. You see, there are two ways to play Speedthru - you can either play to survive and get through all the levels or you can attempt to earn gold medals.

Undoubtedly you'll get more out of this puzzler if you go for the latter option but you might not have much choice but to go for the former. It isn't as simple to play as other block puzzlers like Tetris as it is played in a 3D space. This means not only can you rotate your block left and right but also forwards and backwards using a combination of the R button and all the face buttons. You'll also need to move your block into position with the D-pad and when you're lined-up, you should press L to turbo through the gap.

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You can often fit through the gap with your guardian turned on its side, but you might miss the hearts if you haven't rotated it so the block fits snugly through the shape. Play the early training level and you'll think you've got the controls mastered but it is easy to panic when you're approaching each wall quickly, obstacles are getting in the way and the clock is ticking. In these situations, you may take the easiest option rather than slam into the wall and be forced to go back to the beginning.

It's the same panic you feel when the blocks are piling up in Tetris or when you can't find the correct coloured pill in Dr Mario. It almost makes Pullblox look rather sedate in comparison and although it might make you slam your 3DS shut in frustration, you'll want to go straight back in for more if you fail. It's everything a good puzzle game should be, even if it might be a bit too fiddly for some to get the hang of.

If you do take the easy option, you'll get through these worlds relatively quickly but going for golds will keep you playing for hours. There's also an endless Tower mode in which you just have to rotate the shapes to fit them through gaps as you rise up a tower while the selection of local two-player modes will keep you going after you've completed it.

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You can challenge a friend to see who can reach the top of a tower the fastest or find out who can grab the most hearts. The two-player game which sees two players using the same 3DS - one on the D-pad and the other using the face buttons - is a bit ridiculous but you are getting plenty of content for your £5.40.

The story and accompanying cutscenes may be unnecessary but it's an excuse to create three lovely looking Aztec-inspired worlds in a game that's just made for 3DS. It's this presentation that elevates it above its WiiWare predecessor ThruSpace which followed a similar idea. Another excellent eShop puzzle game.


4 comments so far...
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  1. Simon007 Tuesday 10th Apr 2012 at 16:43

    looks like another cheap puzler that proves why the eshop is pointless.nothing been released that i would be see dead playing on eshop.step it up ninty.

  2. Dertdood Tuesday 10th Apr 2012 at 17:26

    looks like another cheap puzler that proves why the eshop is pointless.nothing been released that i would be see dead playing on eshop.step it up ninty.

    if you actually wouldn't want to be seen playing this game I feel sorry for you

  3. jonnyjazz Tuesday 10th Apr 2012 at 19:17

    Looks like a bit of a soulless puzzle game to be honest. The thing atm I think is that there aren't enough games on e shop for the scores to mean a lot, I think that what is 83% atm will be equivalent to severely less by the end of the year. Not that I'm saying that ONM should have some kind of crazy future sight, just saying that some games that seem really very basic seem to be getting some very good scores. Whilst you can probably get away with this on say an iPhone where the apps are pretty cheap, I think 5.40 is a bit much for this. Pullblox and Dillon's RW seem to have got what is needed to justify the price difference, but this just doesn't seem to.

  4. Amerterasu16 Monday 23rd Apr 2012 at 18:34

    looks like another cheap puzler that proves why the eshop is pointless.nothing been released that i would be see dead playing on eshop.

    :shock: :shock: :o :shock: :o :o :shock: :o :? :( :x
    ....say whaaat? I think that the eshop is AWESOME! It's way better than dsi and wii ware shops, plus you can get demo's of games too. Although sometimes I think that the eshop doesn't have any low low low prices because I've got about Ł1.10 left but there's nothing cheap enough for me to spend it on :| :(

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