The Heist Review

By , on June 1, 2011

The Heist
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • Fun ARG-like interactions.
  • Slick presentation; smooth animations and clear designs for each puzzle type.
  • Four puzzle types keeps the game somewhat novel until the end.


  • No explanations may add to the experience, but it's not kind to casual audiences.
  • Sokoban controls feel loose; taps not always registered properly.


The dangling carrot of a real reward should be enough to tackle The Heist, but tap tap tap goes a step beyond by making it an interactive experience worth diving in to.

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The App Store is no stranger to puzzle collections; it's an easy way to output content without a lot of effort. So when you come across a game like The Heist by tap tap tap, it's difficult to remain cynical as you realize you've jumped down the rabbit hole and you're enjoying every minute of its maddening puzzles.

What makes this game so intriguing is how quickly it manages to invest players in something as obtuse as solving puzzles to crack open a safe. You're given little motivation outside of being told that others before you have failed - it's not a lot, but maybe pandering to a gamer's ego is more powerful than anyone could have assumed. There are four puzzle types, each with no introduction or explanation outside of a basic first level, which ordinarily would be annoying, but in this case it simply adds to the intrigue of your current situation.

Players can busy themselves with sliding block puzzles; a symbol Sudoku-like variant; or a Sokoban-style puzzle in order to add 'power' for your safe-cracking tools. This subsequently unlocks harder variations of the puzzles in each category and if you're finding a particular puzzle too hard to conquer you can switch to something else to keep the ball rolling.

Ordinarily the lack of help in a logic-puzzle title would be a serious no-no and while it's still unfriendly to those not used to the fairly common puzzles presented, it adds to the game's mystique. ARG (Alternate Reality Game) elements are incorporated to add a really unique spin, but most of all players will want to crack open the safe because it's rewards are far more tangible than simply knowing you conquered the game.

Unless you're against logic puzzles on principle, The Heist is definitely worth experiencing and conquering; while other games may offer more 'content', this game actually gives you the motivation to finish it.


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