Art Style: Aquia

Game review by
Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media
Art Style: Aquia Game Poster Image
Fast-paced DSiWare puzzler is safe for kids but challenging.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this downloadable game for the Nintendo DSi is safe for children. However, while the block-shifting puzzles are free of controversy, they can also be extremely challenging and could frustrate younger players.

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What's it about?

One of the launch titles available through DSi Shop (the Nintendo DSi's online store) ART STYLE: AQUIA is a traditional block-shifting puzzle game. Players begin the game confronted with a narrow column of blocks composed of various colors. The object is to shift similarly-hued blocks into groups of three or more to make them disappear. You do this by pushing new groups of blocks into the tower. However, when you press a new group of blocks into one side of the tower, a corresponding number of blocks is pushed out of the other side. These blocks become the new blocks in play, and you must push them back into the tower at a new point of entry. Play continues this way until players clear a set number of blocks, thus finishing the level, or a shadow that slowly spills down from the top of the screen covers the entire tower, ending the game.

Is it any good?

Aquia is simple in concept, but its puzzles can be quite challenging. On the easiest settings players contend with pushing a pair of vertically oriented blocks into a tower composed of just a few different block colors, but on harder settings they'll be forced to deal with a four-by-four square of blocks, many more block colors, and a much faster moving tower shadow, all of which combine to make things far more difficult. Unfortunately, increased challenge doesn't necessarily equal increased longevity. Aquia can become tedious rather quickly, due mostly to the fact that there are no long term goals. For puzzler lovers, it's worth five dollars, but don't expect to get weeks of entertainment out of it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the value of puzzle games. Do you think they help people prepare for the sort of problems we stumble into in our every day lives? Or are they mere distractions that serve no more noble a purpose than time-killing entertainment?

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo DSi
  • Price: $5
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Release date: April 5, 2009
  • Genre: Puzzle
  • ESRB rating: E for (No Descriptors)

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