If you're into old school gaming you may have run into a Tetris-inspired
puzzle game by the name of Klax. If so, then you'll already be familiar with the
gameplay in Star*Burst. Really familiar. This isn't too surprising, though, as
the game was created by one of the original creators of Klax.
In Star*Burst a multi-lane conveyer belt occupies the center of the screen
that brings randomly colored tiles towards you. Your first job is to use your
paddle to catch the tiles when they reach the end of the belt so that they don't
fall into oblivion. Your next job is to flip the tiles that you catch into a
grid at the top of the screen. When you match three or more tiles of the same
color horizontally, vertically, or diagonally in the grid, the tiles are
eliminated and you score points based on the number of tiles removed. The only
other mechanics to the game are that tiles stack up on your paddle but there's a
limit to how many you can hold at a time, and that you can also flip the top
tile on your stack back onto the belt. It will still come towards you but at
least you bought some extra time or uncovered a tile with the color that you
really need at the moment. There are also in-game achievements, most of which
are tied to creating patterns with the blocks in the grid, and you can share
scores and achievements with your friends on Facebook.
You control the paddle by keeping your finger on it and dragging it back and
forth across the bottom of the string. Tapping the paddle will toss the top tile
up into the grid and flicking your finger towards yourself will cause the paddle
to flip a tile back onto the belt. Control is average for an iPhone game - works
well enough most of the time, but manages to miss a tap now and then.
Star*Burst works well as an iPhone game with its bite-sized gameplay and
colorful graphics. Gameplay is fast-paced enough that you can play a couple of
levels while standing in line or waiting for the subway. You may even find
yourself playing it when you've got plenty of time on your hands.
Final Rating: 90%