March 2, 2014 5:00 PM | John Polson
Goodbye Galaxy Games (Flipper, Flush the Goldfish) has created for the 3DS eShop a puzzler called Tappingo with a novel mechanic, and those who've enjoyed puzzles from Nikoli (Sudoku, Slitherlink, Hitori) or the magical Piku Piku/Pic Pic will feel right at home.
The goal is to flick colored strips in one of four directions, but only so far as their count allows. The strips will keep going in any direction until they hit a wall, so the order in which you flick the squares is vital. (The video really does a great job at explaining the dos and dont's here.)
You can play with the stylus, d-pad, or analogue stick and buttons. Some puzzles are very large, making targets very small. I suppose on puzzles such as these a zoom feature might have been nice, but I managed well with these controls.
Going through the 104 puzzles, the introductory ones will take mere seconds, but the large ones at the end will take a good 10-20 minutes each, especially if you skip ahead to them and not refine your skills gradually (like I did).
Tappingo's point and flick gameplay would also be a good fit on mobile phones. I'd love to see Goodbye Galaxy and Tappingo get more love, even if it means expanding to another platform that fits. For now, if you have a 2DS or 3DS, Tappingo is a smart purchase for those with a penchant for puzzles, available for $3 on the Nintendo North American eShop. The game will be available in the EU on March 6 for 3 Euros.