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Geared 2! Review

By , on December 29, 2010


Geared 2!
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5

PROS

  • 60 challenging puzzle levels; more on the way.
  • Cute graphics makeover; interactive hamster.
  • Universal iDevice support.

CONS

  • Guides for accurate placement no longer available.
  • User-created content distributed poorly; only 10 randomly selected levels at a time.

VERDICT

Geared 2! steps things up from the original by polishing its visual style while adding a few new challenges in to the mix; worthwhile for fans of the original and casual newcomers.


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Geared captured the minds of many App Store users thanks to its unique puzzler style that combined a bit of trial and error with an easy to learn system of moving gears. Geared 2! by Bryan Mitchell and the team at PlayfulArt seeks to improve on this formula through one major improvement - the addition of a hamster.

Sure, it may not sound like much, but let me just say how motivating it is to get a puzzle right and getting to watch that cute little lazy rodent being flung out of his gear like a sling-shot. Does that make me evil? Well no matter... The gameplay hasn't changed much from the original and players need only to connect the blue gears to the giant yellow gear by moving or adding new pieces in the system. Special gears and environment challenges add complexity to levels by preventing gears from being placed in specific spots or requiring combinations of gears (like ghost and sun types) to complete the level.

This can get surprisingly challenging early on as very small changes in dragging and dropping gears can completely change the results, making easy levels seem harder than they are. This difficulty is in part thanks to the new art style provided by Narcissistic Studios which, while cute and playful, is missing the grid-pattern that made aiming much easier in the original. There are currently only 60 levels available, though more are planned for release and should you feel desperate enough you can plunge in to the 'user created' levels, however you can only download 10 at a time, picked randomly from those submitted.

Geared 2! doesn't so much build upon the original as it refines and polishes the style in to something that feels more inviting and approachable. The new gears change things up enough to give veteran fans a worthwhile challenge and casual gamers will love the cute, no pressure style.

Screenshots

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