Blueprint 3D, a casual spatial puzzle game from FDG Entertainment, is now available from the app store. Offering tons of puzzles, simple touch controls, and a cerebral challenge, Blueprint 3D is puzzling personified.
Blueprint 3D Pros:
- Simple yet complex puzzle designs
- Relaxing original soundtrack
- Responsive touch controls and smooth animation
- Tons of levels in multiple categories
- GameCenter integration for leaderboards and achievements
Blueprint 3D Cons:
- IAP pop-ups are annoying
- Achievements are mostly for completing level packs rather than rewarding unique accomplishments
Each of the over 240 puzzles starts with an exploded image of line fragments set upon a gridded backdrop of the kind utilized by architects. By swiping you finger back, forth, up, down, or all manner of angles, the image rotates until you find the correct angle from which to view the picture where all of the fragments coalesce into the original 2D image. The moment of recognition and realization is satisfying and quite gratifying. You are rewarded via a 3-star system for your speed in solving the puzzles, and your aggregate time in each of the puzzle categories (Architecture, Electronics, etc.) is converted to points and used to compare your success against others on the global leaderboards. There are often small text labels within the images that serve to orient you to the proper direction, and lining up similar fragments can be a helpful aid in “seeing” the final product. If you get stuck, you can use one of the limited Solutions to solve the puzzle. Run out of solutions, and you’ll have to purchase more via IAP. An obnoxious “Gift This App” button pops up repeatedly in the menu area, offering another chance to spend money.
The graphics are terrific, offering a complex simplicity that’s remarkable, to say the least. Animations are also buttery smooth and, at times, mesmerizing. Most of the screen real estate is devoted to the blueprint image, with small buttons tucked away along the edges to indicate level numbers, time, and possible stars to earn. The stars slowly disappear, giving you a nice visual indicator of what you stand to gain by discovering the puzzle solution at that point. A restart button is also easily accessible in the upper right corner, and levels can be replayed to improve times and earn missed stars. The soundtrack provides different tunes depending on the puzzle set that you are playing. The first, for example, is a relaxing piano tune that fits well with the thought-provoking and casual nature of the game. You do have the option to listen to your own tunes, too. If you don’t care about stars and leaderboards, you can simply enjoy solving the puzzles and watching the swirling chaotic mess snap into order when you hit upon the desired viewpoint. A single finger swipe controls the puzzle rotation, while a two-finger twist will turn an upside-down image rightside-up. A helpful “top” indicator lights up to warn you of this need, and bringing the image close enough to completion will cause it to snap into place rather than cause frustration by forcing the player to find a pixel-perfect position.
Replay value is good, providing the opportunity to improve upon previous results or simply space out with a cool puzzle that responds dutifully to absently rubbing your finger on your iDevice screen. The iPad-specific HD version has the added bonus of making the text labels easier to see, thereby reducing time spent orienting yourself for better initial scores. GameCenter integration allows you to compare scores with players from around the world, as well as capture a couple of dozen achievements while doing so. At a mere $0.99 (or $2.99 for the HD version), Blueprint 3D is a compelling 4.5-Dimple challenge.
Blueprint 3D Review,