Blast-A-Way Review

By , on September 3, 2012

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5 out of 5


  • Tight, intuitive controls.
  • Delightfully satisfying explosions; why can't more things be solved with bombs?
  • Easy to replicate results; takes the sting out of trial and error.


  • Manual camera control is helpful, but fiddly.
  • Challenge ramps up slowly; relaxing, but puzzles lack a 'bite'.


Blast-A-Way invokes the friendly atmosphere of Little Big Planet, but puts you behind the wheel of three explosive maniacs set on solving their problems with brute force - all for the children you have to understand.

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Illusion Labs are quickly working their way up my list of developers I can trust to provide fresh and compelling reasons to pick up an iOS device. Blast-A-Way is their latest release and you’re charged with the task of returning the young ‘boxies’ back to safety by blasting them free of the blocks they’re stuck inside.

Those used to navigating touch-screen interfaces will appreciate the smart, casual simplicity of Blast-A-Way’s controls. Dragging one of the three robot heroes will move them around, while tapping and holding a block will throw a bomb at the angle indicated when you let go. There’s no need to concern yourself with the specifics of the ‘power’ of a shot, but rather where the bomb will land, thus removing the almost ever-present specter of ‘random success’ from the physics-puzzler formula.

Bombs themselves can only affect or be triggered by blocks of a similar color. Explosive bombs trigger on impact; sticky bombs stick to any surface; teleporters move you around the stage; and later on you’ll also be introduced to rebuilders to put blocks back together; sponges to soak up colors on the stage; and colorizers to remove blocks that would otherwise impede you.

It’s a novel system that makes for incredibly complex stages that require you to consider each step carefully before proceeding. As such the game is less of a puzzler at times and more of a trial-and-error, ‘what do I do next’ sort of game, but the detail in the presentation sells the idea as a fun time-waster in these instances and you’re sure to find a level to stump you here and there.

From Rube Goldberg-ian style contraptions to brain-teasers that require you to control multiple robots, conquering the game’s 80 available stages across multiple ‘areas’ will keep you busy for hours. Definitely worth checking out if you need something fresh in your puzzle repertoire.


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