Nothing like Sleigh the Spire !
Santa’s Xmas Adventure is a sliding tile puzzle game,spread over some 720 levels and 3 game modes..
Can you help Santa collect all the lost presents in time for Xmas ?
A starter mode which requires you to move area tiles and form a clear path for Santa to walk from his starting tile to the exit tile. In between are tiles holding Santa’s lost presents that require moving into the correct position,so that Santa can pick them up on route to the exit.
Unlocked after gaining 100 presents. Players are faced with puzzles that have a standard number of moves required in order to complete the puzzle. This mode is more slow paced and relaxing and allows players to plan carefully in order to complete the puzzle in the set moves and gain the maximum 3 present reward.
Final mode unlocked after gaining 200 presents. Players require quick thinking and planning,as you must move tiles whilst Santa immediately starts walking from his start point. One false tile move can cause (or claus!) Santa to miss his step with devastating consequences,bruised head or wet Santa suit and puzzle failure !
Yule be surprised..
Santa’s Xmas Adventure plays exactly like the plastic sliding puzzle pictures you used to get as a child. Usually 9 tiles in the grid with limited movement and one empty tile space. You needed to slide each tile to the correct position to form a picture and it’s no different with this game but with sliding tiles to form a clear pathway. There’s pieces of straight path and bent segments (rather like pipemania)combined with concrete path tiles that can’t be moved but can act rather like puzzle hints in which direction the path needs to go.
What’s quite devious is that a few puzzles in,what you start to realise is that you don’t need to use every piece of pathway the puzzle gives you. A clever element that’s incorporated to give each puzzle a fresh feel and in keeping players interested and engaged.
As for controls, it’s a simple use of the switch direction buttons and the standard A button to select the tile. Whilst this should be easy enough,I found the whole process a little trickier and more fiddly than it should be. This is mainly down to the highlight icon being too faint to see exactly which tile you’ve indicated and I spent many instances looking around the puzzle to see where the indicator was.
On looks,there’s a big hearty Santa character in each puzzle that plods about convincingly enough with each area and tiles,detailed sufficiently and with enough clarity and colour to not confuse or warrant any issues.
Throughout,there’s a chirpy soundtrack accompaniment that’s a little on the retro side and can slightly grate,but as it’s not too loud and surprisingly not too Christmassy,it doesn’t put off from the main gameplay of puzzle solving.
As it goes,the gameplay is overall pretty fun and addictive,with a near perfect difficulty curve as you progress through the levels.There’s a standard undo and restart option in each puzzle with a hint if you get stuck that generously recharges at ten minute intervals,up to a maximum of 10 hints,if you really need them.
In summary,there’s a pretty decent amount to do here and every puzzle feels that bit slightly different from the last one,promoting addictive qualities and potentially hours of gameplay. It certainly held my interest and surprised me in those initial first few hours..
The only downside is that after unlocking all the modes,we follow down the lines of mobile type gameplay and mechanics. Basically just doing puzzles to get the present rewards with little else to show for it,and losing incentive.
Generally,I feel the game would be a bit more comfortable on a mobile device than here on the Nintendo Switch. It provides fun and amusement but it’s not clear how long that could last for over its large amount of 720 levels. It’s basic appeal would well suit the younger players with a Switch lite but coming in at a $9 price tag …
It could well appear a bit on the deer side !
Thanks to Funbox Media / NYX Digital for their code.