Feed Me Oil, a quirky physics puzzler developed by HolyWater Games and published by Chillingo, is now available from the app store. With its rough cartoon graphics, challenging puzzles, and fun fluid physics, Feed Me Oil is a solid gaming experience.
Feed Me Oil Pros:
- Interesting cartoonish art style
- Easy-to-use controls
- Great puzzle design
- Hint system available, plenty of objects to use in solving puzzles
- Crystal and GameCenter integration for global leaderboards and achievements
Feed Me Oil Cons:
- Lullaby soundtrack doesn’t fit the game
- Needs more levels, too many tutorial levels
Feed Me Oil contains 49 levels of play, with 15 levels in each of 3 worlds and a few bonus levels thrown in for good measure, unlocked by earning a certain number of stars or by gifting them to a friend with the same game. Once again, we’re not big fans of the gifting aspect of recent releases, but the option to unlock them on our own helps to mitigate our distaste for this method. Each level requires you to direct a certain volume of oil from an open pipe into one or more collection areas. There are a limited number of different objects at your disposal to use in transporting the black goo over, around, and through the various obstacles. Puzzles get more challenging as you progress, with early efforts requiring you to direct the oil to hit a button first that opens a receptacle cover before redirecting the oil into the receptacle. Spinning water wheels, platforms, fans, color-changing bars, sparkly whirlwinds, magnets, and more allow you to move the oil at will. You earn points for completing levels quickly and with a minimum number of devices. In addition, using fewer than the allotted number of devices earns you up to 3 stars for your resourcefulness.
Graphically, the game has a distinct cartoonish style, reminiscent of a Far Side calendar gone wrong. Each level features some odd-looking creature who’s hungry for oil. The oil animations are somewhat realistic, though it seems a little more watery than we’d expected. Either way, you can’t deny the appeal and enjoyment derived from stumbling upon a clever solution to a perplexing problem. The soundtrack is mostly composed of lullabys and Christmas songs, which had a sedating effect on us that was more likely to put us to sleep than keep us engaged. The controls are pretty simple and intuitive. Tap an element icon to have it pop up on-screen, then drag it into position. Drag the outer circle to rotate it and tap anywhere else to set it. Tapping the pipe starts the flow of oil and tapping it again will reset the level. Rinse and repeat until you get it right. If you get really stuck, there is a hint button with a specific number of available hints. These will show the proper positioning of one of the elements in a possible solution. Once you use a hint, you must wait 30 seconds to use another, though the hope is that you won’t need them all.
Replay value is pretty good, as there are multiple ways to beat a level. You can always take the levels for a spin again in an attempt to improve upon your previous scores. Crystal and GameCenter integration are included for global leaderboards and over 2 dozen achievements to earn. At $0.99 (there is a separate HD version for $1.99), it’s not surprise that Feed Me Oil has unseated some hefty competition atop the app store charts. It’ll be interesting to see how long this 4-Dimple title can hold its position.
Feed Me Oil Review,