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Firstly, I wanted to highlight a real annoyance with this game. I'm left handed and so use the stylus in my left hand, most games of this type allow you to switch the functions of the buttons on the left to the dpad on the right, or they will both do the same function. In this game, this isn't the case. In order to play the game easily, you have to use the stylus in your right hand, leaving your left hand free to use the dpad to move around the level, and with a game that requires really specific movements with the stylus, using the non-dominant hand really isn't ideal. So my advice, if you're left handed, don't get this game!
Now, as for the game itself. It's a set of 100 gravity based levels where you have to get a ball to a certain point in the level using available blocks, tools, etc. i'm not sure who Prof Heinz Wolff is but if he had anything to do with the game I guess he decided not to follow the theories of Newton. What I mean is, the gravity in this game is seriously flunky. The ball has no friction, if you give it a tap it will continue on a flat surface forever, despite it's only travelling at 1 pixel every few seconds. Also the placement of blocks is quite difficult, (even using my left hand), and they frequently bounce up from where you placed them, sometimes knocking down the entire setup you've been trying to do.
If you can live with the flawed controls, this game is challenging and can be fun when you work out how to get the ball where you want it, in some seemingly impossible levels! I'm only going to give it 2 stars though due to the poor impletementation of left/right handed controls.
Another adult friendly puzzle game, this time based on simple physics, not quite up there with the best physics based game ever, that game is Fantastic Contraption (google it to play it on the web) but this game is very enjoyable.
Basically you are given a start point and an end point. At the start point a ball will drop you then have to work out how to get the ball or another object to end up in the end area.
you are given set objects to use to get to the goal, these objects change on each level. So you will making see saws, bridges and dominos in an effort to find a way through each level. Some of the later levels requier some "outside of the box" thinking and are very rewarding when you complete the level.
There are 100 levels all in all and how long that lasts you is entirely dependant on how often you play and how good you are at the game.
This game is good fun but due to the limit of 100 levels I would be wary about paying full price for it.
Developer:EM Studios/Deep Silver
ESRB : E Everyone 3+
Firmly in the Brain Training/Puzzle Soving category, with 100 levels containing Physics based puzzles which need to be solved in order to progress to the next level, this game has all the potential to fill a niche in the genre.
This game appeals to those who like challenging brain puzzles, with each game being dependent on the player using the laws of physics, in particular, gravity, motion and momentum, to achieve your goal.
The basic aim of each game is to get a ball from A to B by arranging various blocks, see-saws, balls and platforms in such a way that the switch at point B will be depressed thus unlocking the next level. However most of these levels can be solved by using, patience, trial and error, common sense and in some games sheer luck.
There are 100 levels to complete and you can only move to the next level when you have completed the previous one - however you are allowed to have one uncompleted level in the game if you get stuck and you are allowed to use a fixed number of hints.
There is also a sandbox game where you can make up your own games and experiments and there is a party mode where there are three further mini games.
I found this game to be very repetitive and uninspiring - once the levels have been completed there is little else to do. It is an easy game to pick up and put down without becoming immersed in, and will certainly pass a couple of hours without causing a headache, but was lacking in any real attraction.
The graphics are quite dark and dull, the accompanying background music to the game is extremely irritating so you end up playing with the sound muted, and the "hint" system all but solves the puzzles for you. The overall impression is one of a game that was released before it was completely developed.
Overall, I was expecting more from this as I love puzzle and brain games, but was left feeling disappointed. It is a pity as with some tidying up of the drag-and-drop calibration, and a re-working of some of the puzzles, the potential is certainly there for a good puzzle game.
Not really good value for money.
These physics-based puzzle games have been around for a while now, mainly on the internet in terms of Flash games but also on the PC in classic titles such as the Incredible Machine. I have always been a fan of these games, and was pleased that Professor Heinz Wolff's Gravity had brought this gravity-based puzzle gameplay straight to my favourite hand-held console.
The basic premise of the gameplay is a variation of getting from A to B. In one part of the screen, a ball or cart can be summoned into action. Elsewhere, a big red button needs to be pressed to get to the next level.
This is achieved using your Inventory, in which a host of blocks etc. are stashed. These blocks must be arranged on-screen, in order to create reactions - in accordance with Newton's laws - that will result in the red button being pressed and the level being completed.
In typical DS style, the game is controlled with the stylus, which allows blocked to be placed, moved around, and removed completely from the play area. I have to say that although this control method is clearly intuitive, the controls can be a little bit twitchy. especially when it comes to moving blocks. I have on several occasions spent ages arranging my solution carefuly, only to accidentally remove a block at the bottom of the screen, and then cringe / weep as my whole creation comes toppling down in a depressing (but impressively accurate, scientifically speaking) manner.
Twitchiness aside, the game is definitely playable if you're patient enough to overlook the odd hitch. Over the game's 100 levels you will be challenged, but not *too* much, enough that solving a level is a satisfying and fulfilling experience.
The graphics are nothing special really, although they have a quirky appeal that keeps things interesting and accentuates the 'mad scientist' style that the game seems to portray. Levels take place against a series of backgrounds that mix things up a bit and keep the game varied.
The game also includes a sandbox mode. I thought I'd really enjoy the freeform opportunities available here, however, I found that after I'd completed all the standard levels available I had no real desire to play without a goal in mind. Unlike classics such as the incredible machine, there are only really a limited number of types of 'pieces' that can placed in the play area, and I think this may have been the reason that the game has limited lasting appeal. Perhaps for a kid, however, the sandbox mode would be appropriately fun, and give the game an extra edge.
Overall, Professor Heinz Wolff's Gravity is a fun and unique game on the DS. Although it does have its flaws, it's an interesting and varied puzzler that should keep you challenged for several hours of quality gameplay.
Ever on the lookout for a game which will exercise my mind and make me think, the other week I was looking through the DS games in my local video game store and spotted one called Professor Heinz Wolff's Gravity. The back of the game looked intriguing.
From what I could tell from the screen shots and the blurb on the back, I figured it looked like I would have to use builing blocks and things to achieve various goals when they interacted with each other by way of beiong affected by gravity etc.
This really rather appealed to me as I have in the past enjoyed similat types of internet browser based games. Having a bit of credit on my loyalty card I got the game at a bargainous price, the normal selling price is approximately £17.99 though you might find it cheaper with a bit of shopping around.
When I got home I stuck the card in and was greeted with a fairly simple screen offering a few play modes. I selected the first option 'Start'. This took me to a profile select screen. As with an increasing number of games, you can have up to three separate profiles on this game. I really like this option in games as often my girlfriend and I both want to play a game and this way we can progress through the game individually at our own pace.
Setting up a profile was simply a case of selecting one of the slots and entering a name. One this is done you can click the profile and get playing.
The first couple of levels give you a sort of introduction to some of the elements involved in the game, which are presented to you by an animated version of the popular TV presenting scientist Professor Heinz Wolff. They introduce you to the basic controls and the aim of each level; which is very simple to explain.
On each level there is a red button, there is also a hole, out of which will come either a ball or a cart thing, when you press the play button. Before you press that button, you will need to arrange a selection of objects so that a chain of events takes place which leads to the red button being pressed. (ok that was harder to explain in text than I had imagined...). So to paraphrase, stack/balance objects so the red button will be hit when the ball or cart drops from the hole.
The first few levels are really quite simple and just introduce you to the control method. This game is driven using the stylus like so many other DS games, and works fairly well. Tap anywhere on the screen to bring up the object inventory for the level, then simply drag the objects onto the level and place them. Objects can be rotated using the direction buttons allowing you to place then exactly where you want.
If you want to remove an object from where you have placed it, simply double tap it and it will put back into the object inventory.
When you have the objects placed in such a way that you think the button will get hit, you hit the play button (A) and the ball/cart is released and the level plays out with the objects etc hitting each other, falling over etc. If the red button gets hit as a result of the objects interactions the level is completed and you can move on to the next level. If not, you stop the action, the level resets to how you had set it up and you can try again.
If while you are placing the objects you accidentally knock something over or move the wrong object there is an undo button (X) which is quite useful though it only remembers the last move you made. It would have been more useful if it remembered several moves but it still proved helpful on occasions.
If you are really struggling with a level, you can buy hints which help you out with the solution by placing an object or two in the correct place. But these hints are limited as you have to buy them from a hint fund, which you can't increase, and as you get through the game the hints become more expensive so use too many early on and you won't have enough left for later levels!!!
There are a hundred levels in the game, some of which are simple and others will have you scratching your head for quite sometime but they are all doable.
Having got quite addicted to this game, my girlfriend and I have both completed all 100 levels and did so in the space of about a week with each of us having extended periods of play. We both enjoyed the game and really wanted to get through the levels and complete it, which is more than can be said for some games which get very boring and are left unfinished.
As well as the main game there are a few other options, there are some sandboxes, which allow you to just play around with the objects and see how they interact with each other and gravity; which sounds like it might be fun but really there is nothing much you can do, so I wouldn't bother with this. There are also 3 minigames - building a tower, shooting balls into buckets and shooting balls to hit coloured blocks. These are fairly quick games and add a small amount of entertainment to the game but really could be a lot better.
While I thoroughly enjoyed the main game and found it very satisfying when I have come up with a solution to a level which at first attempt seemed impossible, it was not without it's faults.
Firstly, the control system which should have been very intuitive and simple turned out to be a bit of a nuisance. At times you would be tapping with the stylus to select an object to move and the inventory would pop up instead (this happened an awful lot of times!!!), or you would end up sending the object back to the inventory rather than moving it. Some of the smaller objects where very hard to select even when you seemed to be tapping directly on them. I feel these problems would drive younger child insane and end up with the game being left unplayed as it is really quite frustrating.
Secondly, unlike other similar games I have played whereby the physics engine only gomes into action when you set the level in motion, in this is is constantly in operation which can be very annoying as it is much too easy to end up knocking over a tower etc that you've carefully built. Also, combined with the vague controls you can easily end up sending a vital piece back to the inventory and end up with a whole set coming crashing down... Also, at times you need to place small pieces at one end of a see-saw to catapault them upwards, many a time when doing this the object simply rolled off before it could be flung into the air, which did at times cause frustration!!!
Thirdly, the rather limited number of types of objects was rather disappointing. Unlike other games with motors, magnets, etc etc, in this you merely have blocks of various shapes, balls of various sizes and carts, which meant that the creative options for trying to solve each level were quite limited. It also meant that the sandbox modes were rather dull.
Overall, would I recommend this game? Well, despite the problems I actually would be with certain provisos. Firstly I would probably avoid recommending it for children as I think they would find it to frustrating and hence wouldn't play it. This is a shame because it really should have been a fun way for children to learn about gravity and physics but instead I think they would just be annoyed by the vague controls.
Secondly I would want people to get it as cheaply as possible as I think people might be disappointed with it if they have paid full price, wait for it to be in the sales and you'll have picked up a bargain.
It is a fun game and at times very taxing on the old grey matter and if you can over look the rather wooly controls you will enjoy it. The large number of levels will keep you coming back for more but it really could have been so much better.
100 levels varying from an easy to solve puzzles, up to hard challenging mind benders. Amazing mini-games for exciting matches with friends. The ability to create, swap, and buy new levels meaning the game is almost infinitely extendible. Addictive game principle will keep you hooked. 20 sandbox levels for experimental play. In game hints to help you on your way.