incablast1.pngDeveloper TakeTwoTablets specializes in small, addictive, action-puzzle games. Their most recent releases are suited to touch-screen devices, but also play well on computers using a mouse. Most their games so far have been labeled as entries in the Minima series, and they all share a certain slick aesthetic and focus on simple but innovative gameplay mechanics. Minima 5, Inca Blast, may be the best expression of those ideas so far, and is a real jewel of a puzzle game.

The playing field of Inca Blast is a square grid. Each level, gems of four different colors (red, yellow, green, or blue) are arrayed upon the grid in different configurations. The borders of the grid are lined with statues that spit mystical fire when you click them. Each statue covers one column or row of the grid. Each line of statues shoots only one color of fire, and you match it to the color of the gem to destroy it. You start the game with 60 seconds to score as high as possible. You gain 3 seconds when you clear a level, and you lose 5 seconds each time you shoot a gem with the wrong color of fire.

The simple premise and intuitive gameplay add up to a challenging, satisfying experience. Each session is so quick and so much fun that it's easy to keep playing "one more game" in pursuit of a higher score. You can play Inca Blast in your browser. If you like it, and you have an Android device, you can even shell out $0.99 for the mobile version, which features a multiplayer mode.