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The bottom line is, if you have any interest whatsoever in the concept of a puzzle/RPG hybrid, you’ve probably already played one of Infinite Interactive’s previous games. This one’s pretty good, too. It’s as fun and addictive as ever, and Puzzle Kingdoms’ speed of play gives it the slight edge over Puzzle Quest in my book. Still, it’s substantially the same as the previous games, so if you’re burnt out on the formula this one probably won’t impress you.
Puzzle Kingdoms on the Wii turned out to be a better game than the DS version -- the core mechanics are rock solid. The problems I have with the game come from the sloppy production values, most likely due to the bargain basement development budget. If you can overlook the awkwardness of the elements outside of the core challenge then you've got yourself a decent timesuck.
Cheat Code Central
Puzzle Kingdoms from Zoo and Infinite Interactive is, surprisingly, another very interesting match-three puzzle game. The developer seems to have plenty of ideas for how to exploit the design, and we look forward to seeing what they come up with next. That said, this particular game has quite a few nagging issues and bugs that mire down the experience. The variety of gameplay is also a bit meager, even for a $20 budget title. The story may be lengthy, but the process remains mostly the same the whole way through. It’s still a good game to veg out to, so long as you don’t mind a few rough patches presented on a bare canvas.
Puzzle Kingdoms will appeal to fans of the Puzzle Quest games, though it doesn't really add anything new to the franchise and isn't terribly impressive. It's a solid puzzle game, and I recommend it to fans of the genre, though new players may end up being more puzzled by the gameplay rather than the actual puzzles.
If you're willing to ignore the production values, you'll find an addictive adventure worthy of the "from the creators of Puzzle Quest" moniker that is so proudly displayed on the Puzzle Kingdoms box art.
Gamers' Temple, The
For a game with a solid, proven puzzle system at its core, Puzzle Kingdoms really falls short by eliminating any actual challenge for the player while skimping on graphics, sound and even packaging to the point that it is almost an embarrassment to have this one on your shelf (that is, if you care about that kind of thing… if not, enjoy your collection of Imagine games and stuff that ends with the letter 'Z' (Catz, Dogz, Babiez, Mealz, Testz, Bargain Gamez)). At least if you play Pokemon Trozei, you'll get essentially the same game with a bunch of funny Pokemon faces to laugh at. Here, you might laugh, but it won't be in a good way.