***There’s a Birzzle promo code hidden in this review for the lucky person who finds it first!***
As any iOS gamer can tell you, the Apple app store is over-saturated with birds and zombies, thanks to certain popular games. Many game developers try to use these themes in the hopes that it alone will make their games successful. While Birzzle Pandora does feature birds, that is by no means what makes it great game. If it featured turtles or hamsters instead, it would be just as addictive. At the same time, you’d be making a big mistake if you skip this game just because you’re sick of the likes of Angry Birds.
Birzzle is a match-three game where you need to match like-colored square birds to make them poof (and feathers fly) so the screen doesn’t fill up with them. For two of the modes, you can pick up birds and move them around the board. You can only do so if there is an opening to the right, left or top of them, similar to a game of Mahjong. The game starts off easy enough, and it may almost seem *too* easy. But before long it becomes a fast-paced ride as the birds are falling faster, new colors are added to the mix, and even locked birds that can’t be moved. The longer you survive, the more challenging the game gets. It will take a lot of practice and quick reflexes to reach the high scores and earn golden eggs. To get the highest scores, you want to match bigger groups of birds. In all settings, you get powered-up birds like lightning, flaming Phoenixes and wormholes by matching more than three birds.
There are three different modes of play: Classic, Pandora and Ice Break. They each offer unique gameplay to give you plenty of variety. Classic is endless mode, Pandora is on a 2-minute timer and allows you to see your Facebook friends’ scores so you can compete. And last but not least, Ice Break encases all the birds in ice once they hit the board, so they can’t be moved. You have to choose where they go before they fall. You also have a 1-minute timer, but you can earn extra time with bonus hourglasses and by clearing a wave.
With Pandora mode, you earn coins which can be used to buy power-ups before starting a game (similar to games like Bejeweled Blitz). You can also get letters to form the word “BIRZZLE” for more bonuses. There are many ways to earn extra points, allowing for a variety of gameplay styles and strategies.
The controls are responsive and intuitive throughout the whole game. It works perfectly with a touch screen and rewards those with fast fingers.
The retina-optimized graphics are bright and colorful. They can appeal to children without offending adults with cuteness overload. There are various types of birds in different colors, and they all look unique. The animations are all fluid and lag-free. From x-ray lightning to flaming phoenixes, this game is anything but bland. Enfeel did a great job giving this game a polished look and feel.
Personally, I found the music cute and upbeat at first but ultimately annoying. The sound effects are fun, consisting of the birds making funny little noises like “uh oh!” and a sort of purr sound. AAJ6KPTFHX44 But unfortunately the sound options lump the music and sound effects into one. I would prefer to be able to shut the music but keep the sound effects. But even so, it’s a minor issue with an otherwise excellent game. And the music can’t be *too* annoying because I find myself keeping it on just so I can hear the cute sound effects.
Replay Value: 5/5
Birzzle Pandora is an incredibly addictive game with several play modes. All three modes offer plenty of replay-ability, especially the Classic endless mode. For the completists there are a whopping 52(!) Achievements to get as well as GameCenter leaderboards. There is plenty to keep you busy here.
Birzzle Pandora is a genuinely fun and addictive game. Sure, it may borrow from other games, but it does it well enough to stand on its own. I would recommend it to any match-three puzzle fans. If not for the audio options (or lack thereof), I would give it a 5.