The app's gameplay has promise, but really focuses on paying for progress, which won't appeal to everyone. While Crimo doesn't provide a lot of detail about the crimes players try to solve, its logic puzzles -- which combine elements of a crossword puzzle and sudoku -- are fun to play. They're also primarily the only interactive exercise. There aren't any other types of puzzles -- but because they get increasingly more challenging, the number puzzles don't really feel routine.
But there isn't a ton of actual detective work -- or engaging elements -- involved in solving cases. Clues pop up periodically when you correctly guess a row's content, but players then just click on the clue to submit it for analysis and wait for the results to come back, which will indicate if the suspect, weapon, or motive is a false or valid lead. You don't even really get to make a guess as to who the killer is -- the game does it for you by process of evidence elimination. While the introductory tutorial is paced well, the gameplay's different. Players are gently chastised if they click on an incorrect square in puzzles in the tutorial, but in games, that rapidly depletes their energy -- and coin reserves, if they need to tap into them to replenish it. They can also snack on something for an energy boost, but finding something to eat depends on chance -- a food item might be hidden in the board, but there typically aren't any clues to help you find it. That could drive gamers to get locked out of play and feel like they have to buy in-app currency to keep playing, unless they're willing to wait for their lives to replenish. But even the gameplay is broken up by lengthy ads that appear shortly after you finish the tutorial, and you have to wait for each one to end before you can proceed. Because the analysis process can take some time -- a half-hour for some items -- you also may end up moving on to the next case while you're still waiting for another one to be solved. That can be sped up, of course, by spending more real-world money on currency packages. Crimo starts to feel like a cash grab fairly fast -- which is disappointing, because even with the somewhat passive crime-solving system, mystery fans might otherwise get a kick out of trying to beat the puzzles and watching the cases' conclusions unfold.