Simplicity is often overlooked when it comes to video games. Simplicity can play a major factor in a games DNA and mixed with a strong element of gameplay, the results can often overwhelm all the other elements such as graphical state and entice all those feelings on what makes games naturally fun.. engagement and addictiveness!
A prime example is Fill-it from developers 11sheep.
Heavily borrowing from the 1981 Taito arcade classic Qix. The idea of Fill-it is to move a small pointer around a large rectangular area and by rejoining a line from the point you started, filling in and claiming areas of territory from a vast array of orb like enemies prepared to chase and blast your little pointer to smithereens. Players cannot afford to be complacent either, as drawing a line for a sustained and pretty short period of time can make the line go red and ignite it like the fuse of a bomb with your pointer being the bomb!
On startup there’s three modes to choose from. The standard challenge mode offers over 90 single player levels of increasing difficulty. Couch Co-Op multiplayer for up to 4 players and over 40 challenge levels in local Co-Op to play with a friend. Combine this with in-game achievements and 3 difficulty settings and there’s a reasonably decent amount of content to play and tweak around with, on offer.
What’s evident from the first puzzle is an instant likeability and a good deal of quickly engaging gameplay as you progress through single play and reach each level objective.
This is usually a set percentage of territory to acquire with a useful bar at the bottom centre of the screen giving you the percentage of areas you’ve drawn in as you play. Like most mobile games as well, each level has a three star system for budding completionists with players requiring collecting stars scattered on game maps,either fixed or appearing at various intervals. This cleverly prohibits players just drawing and expecting quick completion from drawing a few lines for maximum territory and having to use strategy and careful planning like trapping and destroying enemies in the drawn boxes to get maximum points and rewards for the level. Simple but clever !
Graphically it may look pretty basic but there’s a sudden realisation that it doesn’t really need high end glitz and glamour to appeal and play well. Everything is set out with enough sharpness and clarity with no confusion as each level is revealed and played out. Accompanying this title is a fun and upbeat selection of electronic tunes that also add to the fun factor and appeal.
So overall, fill-it presents itself as a decent alternative take on a classic title and format with simplicity and addictiveness it’s forte’ and a good deal of content adding value for money and replay value in one immensely enjoyable package.
Thanks to 11sheep for the code