Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Rooms: The Main Building (DS)

Rooms: The Main Building is an innovative new title for the DS. Players must help the central character known as 'Mr. X' escape from a mysterious building by completing a set of sliding puzzles. The game, which boasts over 100 levels, was developed by Natsume Inc, a Japanese video games production company whose other well-known titles include the Harvest Moon series.

As the plot goes, poor Mr. X receives a strange gift on his birthday. When he opens the gift he finds himself transported into the world of Rooms. Mr. X can only go home when all of the sliding puzzles have been completed and the mystery of the strange building has finally been solved...

As well as sliding puzzles, the game features some clever twists to keep players entertained. These include  keys, telephones, ladders, magic cupboards and much more, which the player must  utilise in order to solve the game. Furthermore, Rooms also features a 'level editor' mode, so that players can create and play their own sliding puzzles. 

This game looks very interesting on the surface. However, it has one overriding flaw - unlike other sliding puzzles, which allow the player to slide the titles in any direction they choose, Rooms only allows players to move a tile if 'Mr. X' is standing in the square at the time. This soon leads to frustration when trying to solve the puzzle, and turns the art of sliding puzzles into a monotonous chore.

It is a shame that Natsume Inc chose to include such an annoying mechanism in this title, as the actual idea behind the game is so inspired and unique. It is not so much that this is a bad game, it actually has a lot of potential, but be prepared to spend a lot of time scratching your head in frustration when the tiles do not move as you want them to. Overall rating: 4/10

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