A friend of mine once had a fellow approach him in Lima, Ohio and offer to pay him to deliver a package across town. Despite being a destitute college student, this friend was wise beyond his years, and declined the offer. In Kona’s Crate HD, not only will you deliver the package, but you’ll deliver it 60 times. Via rocket propelled pallet. To a fellow in a mask and a skirt.
What is it?
Kona’s Crate HD is a physics-based puzzle game that tasks you with moving a wooden crate from here to there. You do this by flying the crate through increasingly difficult mazes/hallways that eventually become filled with various obstacles such as dynamite and geysers. Certain challenges also pop up—such as “Perform a Barrel Roll”—to keep things interesting and to reward you with more stars at the end.
You can post your best times to Facebook and Twitter, and achievements are offered through Game Center and OpenFeint.
How does it work?
The game features a seemingly simple two-touch flying system that’ll take quite a long time to master. Using your thumbs, you touch one at a time anywhere on the left and right side of the screen to thrust away from that side. Touching both thumbs to the screen fires both rockets to move in the direction the pallet is facing, taking gravity and velocity into account.
So, it sounds simple, but control is difficult (that’s the challenge, of course). The early levels are good for helping you move to the left and right without having the crate fall off the pallet (requiring you to restart the level), and helping you learn to stop. I found useful to hang out in a wide open level early on and just practice my flying, because there’s no way you’ll get through the later levels without some serious pallet flying skills.
The attractive backdrops and somewhat soothing music help impart a sense of calm, which you’ll need as you become infuriated with your inability to maintain control of the crate.
Is it contagious?
Kona’s Crate is very much one of those games with levels so fast and seemingly easy that you’ll quickly find you’ve spent more time with it than you originally anticipated.
Kona’s Crate is a good option for those who enjoy challenging physics-based puzzle games, provided you’ve got the patience to master the control scheme. If so, you’re rewarded with 60 levels of gameplay across three environments, with more promised by the developer. I haven’t finished all 60 levels, but I certainly hope that when I do I’ll find out just what was in all those crates. Hopefully a shirt for Kona? Or a pair of pants?