Tapping, swiping, or otherwise seeking and pointing out patterns is a hallmark of the blast genre of mobile puzzle games, and now Rovio has hopped on board with a new Angry Birds game, aptly titled Angry Birds Dream Blast. The game is available for free in the Play Store right now, and the graphics aren't too demanding, so just about any device should be able to run it.
This game boasts a number of different modes to help it stand out from the crowd, along with the colorful Angry Birds characters that fans have come to know and love over the decade or so that the game series has been around. Naturally, most of the usual blast genre conventions are also in place for familiarity's sake.
This isn't one of those games with a convoluted tutorial that makes you feel like it's wasting your time and keeping you from actually playing. It throws you right in and begins showing you the objectives, play modes, and conventions you'll be experiencing, and within a few levels, novice players could end up in serious danger of actually losing.
Those conventions consist of purchasable power-ups, Angry Birds characters that can pop up on the board and clear pieces, obstacles that can keep objectives from being accomplished, and various gizmos that represent those objectives. You'll start the game clearing specified numbers of colored bubbles. There are also objectives that see you getting bird eggs to ground level, clearing bubbles to unlock pig locks, clearing away certain spaces to get rid of dark spots behind the board, and more.
The power-ups, meanwhile, consist of standard blast fare, including clearing a given bubble, clearing all bubbles of a given color, and so on. The birds start coming when you pop large bubble formations. Blast four or more bubbles to get a Red bird that clears a horizontal line. Set it next to another, and you get a yellow Chuck, which blasts in a plus formation. Two Chucks, meanwhile, make a black bird that sets off like a bomb and clears all nearby bubbles.
Rovio is now officially on the blast bandwagon, and thankfully, it's with a pretty good game for the genre it's in. Fans of other blast games and similar puzzlers like Bejeweled and Bubble Bobble clones will find a lot to like here. Rounds are quick and satisfying, and the game is pretty good about never trapping you in a 'destined to lose' scenario.
The core gameplay is most similar to Toon Blast, though the wide variety of things to do and different power-ups to use makes it more akin to Family Guy: Another Freakin' Mobile Game in just about every other way. Fans of those two will certainly find a lot of familiar elements here, but the game makes sure to take fresh strides, too, mainly in the brisk feel of its gameplay and how intuitively everything is presented.
Rovio getting into a field as crowded as blast games won't affect much, though it will definitely shake some lower-quality and smaller-name competitors. Casual gamers will find it's an interesting time to be in their particular niche in the gaming world. Expect to see all-out war unfold in the blast genre, if this trend of big-name studios getting in on the action continues in any significant form.