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Terra Chroma (iOs) Review

 
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At a Glance...
 

Formats: iOs, Android
 
Genre: , ,
 
Year:
 
Developer:
 
Final Score
9.5
9.5/ 10


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Blends rpg, strategy, and puzzle into a challenging and engaging game.

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You won't want to put it down.


Final Fiendish Findings?

Puzzle gamers, rejoice! There’s a new game in town, and it has the perfect blend of Tetris tiles and strategy elements to keep you enthralled for hours. Terra Chroma is one of those games that kind of gets you right from the start. Though the story line is kind of standard rpg, the game mechanic […]

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Posted July 1, 2015 by

 
Full Fiendish Findings...
 
 

Puzzle gamers, rejoice! There’s a new game in town, and it has the perfect blend of Tetris tiles and strategy elements to keep you enthralled for hours.

Terra Chroma is one of those games that kind of gets you right from the start. Though the story line is kind of standard rpg, the game mechanic is instantly engaging – so easy to learn, but difficult to master all of the elements you’ll need to do well in the game. You play as a brave young Alchromist – one who learns to master the elements in order to battle your way through a time of great turmoil. The very elements you harness to save your people seem to be turning against the land, and it is up to you to figure out why.

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Along the way, you’ll pick up various companions – who will both aide you in your quest, and guide you in the best ways to use your powers. You’ll also, in standard rpg style, earn experience points as you battle, as well as picking up (or purchasing) various types of loot. Once you level up, those experience points can be spent to upgrade your character in various ways. The loot is often magical items that can be used in battle, or sold to purchase things you find more useful. All of this, along with your ability to wander the world at will, are all textbook rpg – and they are done quite well. There are battles to be found everywhere, as well as quests and story elements to uncover – but how you go about it is up to you.

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As simply an rpg, Terra Chroma is well done – but not all that exceptional. It is the puzzle mechanic that really puts this game over the top for me. Each battle is made up of a game board. You’ll begin on one side, and must make your way to the door on the other side to complete the puzzle. In order to do this, you’ll need to clear a path. At the beginning, you only have power over water. Using your Alchromist powers, you can freeze and unfreeze blocks of water – but only in certain shapes. On the side of the board, you are given your pieces for the level, and they look exactly like Tetris tiles. Think of these pieces as your spells. Using touch, you draw the shapes onto the board, and they will freeze or unfreeze the pieces beneath them.

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Sounds simple enough, but there are some caveats. For one thing, using a piece to freeze one tile may melt the one next to it. On top of that, you have a limited number of pieces (and there is a bonus for using less of them as well). Some levels have treasure that can be picked up, but may require more tiles to do so. All of this adds a challenging element of strategy that ensures you think about which tiles you’ll use before you get started. Though there are some timed levels, many are not, so you can often take the time to work out a game plan.

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Of course, water is just the beginning. There are several different elements to master, as well as creatures who aren’t happy to see you use their elements. As the game advances, so does the difficulty level, and you’ll soon be switching between elements and planning on the fly – hoping to both advance in the game and level up your character, which is not generally an easy task. The puzzle battles work like a typical mobile game, which means you can redo them several times if you need to, which is often necessary for the more difficult boards. As with most rpgs, there are battles galore, which means you can puzzle to your heart’s content, but you don’t have to do every one.

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Terra Chroma is a masterful blend of puzzle and rpg that will keep you engaged for hours on end. The mechanic is incredibly simple to learn – my six year old picked it up in just seconds, and happily played many of the easier levels. Like all great puzzle games, the challenge ramps up as you get into the game, adding more and more elements to each puzzle, keeping you working hard and loving every minute. It’s a perfect choice for both rpg and puzzle fans alike.


Amy

 
U.S. Senior Editor & Deputy EIC, @averyzoe on Twitter, mother of 5, gamer, reader, wife to @macanthony, and all-around bad-ass (no, not really)