Android Amusements: Ruzzle

Sections: 2D, Columns, Developers, Exclusives, Features, Game-Companies, Genres, Handhelds, Handhelds-Other, Puzzle, Smartphones

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ruzzleHey everyone! Sorry for the one day delay, but never fear. Your Ruzzle installment of Android Amusements is here! I only had time for a quick app due to a barrage of major console and handheld releases over the last two weeks, so I figured I’d see what all the hubbub was about Ruzzle and share my experiences with you.

Ruzzle is basically a multiplayer word search. When a match begins, players drag their fingers along the onscreen letters to find words. They have two minutes to find as many as they possibly can after three rounds. The person who finds the most words wins. Do well enough, and you may earn a place on the leaderboard.

While this is an Android app, I liked how Ruzzle is compatible with the iOS version. It means people have access to a larger user-base of potential players. I was always able to find a match, even when I didn’t have any friends online. Plus, matches moved quickly. It’s obvious a lot of people are waiting, because I never had to wait more than a day for my opponents to finish their moves.

The downside is, there’s no way to play Ruzzle alone in the free version. It’s a shame, since a single player could have easily been implemented in both versions. Even if you do pay for the full version, the single player Practice mode is just that – practice. It doesn’t have an offline scoreboard where you can see your best times. It’s just one brief round with no incentive to keep going.

Also, Ruzzle requires a password. I hate when Android apps, or any games at all, require a password to play when no in-app purchases are involved. The app is on my tablet, who else is going to be playing it? And even if one of my friends did, I wouldn’t care if they wanted to play under my username.

While I enjoyed Ruzzle and I think it works well, it falls into the same trap as many other social games. It won’t hold a player’s attention. While some social games delay the inevitable with updates that add some extra content, that can’t happen with Ruzzle. It’s just a basic word game and, at the rate these are released, it probably has a good year, maybe two, before it’s replaced by something similar, but at the same time newer and shinier.

I say, go with the free version of Ruzzle. You’ll enjoy this game, but once your friends stop playing, the community disperses or something new comes along, you’ll drop it. If you really want a single player Practice mode and the ability to have as many games as you want open, then go ahead and spend the $1.99 on the full version.

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