Tiny Skweeks logo

Loriciel * £24.99

Reminiscent of all the cute little puzzle games that have ever touches your Amiga's internal drive, Tiny Skweeks is just fab. The furry stars of this adorable game are the offspring of Skweek, who had his own US Gold game a couple of years ago. If you remember Skweek, you'll recall it lacked originality but was fun and has cutesy, colourful appeal to younger players. And the same is entirely true of this one, too.

The game is exactly the same as The Power. The idea is to move objects - in this case, Skweek kids - to particular places - in this case, the appropriately-coloured base.

The problem is that Tiny Skweeks will only move in straight lines and only stop moving when they hit the edge of the arena. Add in special squares that push and pull, and manifold puzzle potential is opened up.

Original it isn't. Enjoyable, intriguing and well-presented it is. If you haven't played this type of puzzle game before, get this version.

Bett & Nett

Tiny Skweeks logo

"Skweeks" war seinerzeit ein großer Erfolg - aber nur in Frankreich. "Super Skweek" erging es hierzulande kaum besser, daher hat Loriciel dem dritten Teil nun ein neues Spielprinzip verpaßt.

Neu ist das neue Konzept aber nur im Rahmen der bisher eher in Richtung Geschicklichkeit tendierenden "Skweek"-Reihe, am Tüftel-Sektor ist es ein (ur-) alter Bekannter.

In insgesamt 100 Leveln warten zwischen zwei und zehn der knuddeligen Kartoffel-Sprites darauf, vom Spieler per Maus, Stick oder Keyboard ins Bettchen gebracht zu werden. Leider stellen sie sich dabei vor lauter Schalftrunkenheit etwas tölpelhaft an, denn einmal in Bewegung gesetzt, machen sie nicht eher halt, bis sie auf ein Hindernis (Kollege oder Wand) stoßen. Dazu sind die Biester recht heikel, sie akzeptieren nämlich nur eine farblich zu ihnen passende Schlafstatt...

Ähnlich wie bei "Atomix" und Konsorten besteht der Kniff nun darin, seine Pfleglinge so zu manövrieren, daß sie sich nicht gegenseitig blockieren. Wer es innerhalb des Zeitlimits schafft, allen zur Nachtruhe zu verhelfen, erhält einen Code für diesen Abschnitt.

Außerdem lassen sich durch entsprechende Extras sowohl die drei Bildschirmleben als auch die verfügbare Zeit ausbauen; der Zwei-Spieler-Modus des Vorgängers wurde dagegen ersatzlos gestrichen.

Die Präsentation ist mit den süßen Zwischengrafiken und der ständig besser werdenden Begleitmusik recht ordentlich ausgefallen, die Steuerung klappt sogar hervorragend. Ja, im Lauf der Zeit wird das zunächst arg schnarchige Spiel sogar immer stressiger und interessanter - wer das altbekannten Prinzips also noch nicht gänzlich überdrüssig ist, sollte den Betthupferln ruhig mal eine Chance geben. (pb)

Tiny Skweeks logo

They're cute, furry and full of fun, but they're also out to take over the Earth.

With a name like that, what sort of a game do you expect this to be? A totally evil, hard as nails multi-way scrolling blaster? Or an enormous RPG with more monsters and spells than you ever thought possible, even in your wildest fantasies? Or perhaps a cutesy little puzzle game with fluff-ball characters and irritating sound effects?

There is a plot behind the game, but you don't really want to know about that. You do? Well, as the rather duff translation on the back of the box explains, "My children, the tiny skweeks, have taken In hostages with a waterphaser the driver of their spacebus while he was driving them out to holiday on the moon." Oh, I see, it all begins to make sense now.

Anyway, all you really do need to know is that the skweeks in question have landed on Earth and are determined to wreak havoc. And, surprise, surprise, you've got to stop them. Quite how the havoc manifests itself is unclear in the game, but the manual burbles gaily about how they've got an insatiable urge to turn things pink. In fact, the plot is totally irrelevant - you have to stop the skweks and that's that.

Varying numbers of coloured skweeks appear on a series of single-screen levels, and you have to put them to sleep by manoeuvring them on to special traps which are the same colour as the skweeks. The only trouble is that the skweeks only move in straight lines and will only stop moving when they hit a wall or some other object, which means you have to devise devious ways to move them around the increasingly difficult levels on to the right traps.

All the elements a good puzzle game should have

To make matters worse, you're up against a draconian time limit, so if you put one skweek wrong the whole world will be painted pink. (Well it would if the game agreed with what it says in the manual).

And that's about it really. 101 levels of mildly interesting, but ultimately not particularly engrossing, puzzling fun. It's got all the elements a good puzzle should have - stupid easy opening levels to teach you how to play, a different theme for each set of ten levels, and a smattering of bonuses. And of course there're the ubiquitous cuddly things that pull faces, and stick their tongues out at you.

But at the end of the day, when all the cliches are said and done, you can't help feeling that something's lacking. The game doesn't draw you in and make you want to keep playing until you've got to the end. Sure, it's very well presented and the control system's easy to use. But the game's not at all addictive. The idea of the game is peculiar - you have to save the Earth by capturing cuddly things, when normally you'd be saving the cuddly things.

There just doesn't seem to be any point, and if you like a little substance in your games, you'll find Tiny Skweeks more than a tiny bit lacking. But does there have to be a point? Well, no, not really. Not if you just want a diversion for a few pleasant hours of moderately perplexing puzzle-game fun.

Tiny Skweeks
  1. There's one of the little critters. Stamp on it, crash it, torch it, shoot it. Or, as an alternative, just send it to sleep on one of these pads.
  2. Throws the skweek in the direction it's pointing, a la Cool Croc Twins.
  3. Gives you an extra life, but you get a code for each level, and nobody's keeping score so what does it matter how many you lose?
  4. Grab the clock for a bit of extra time if 45 minutes each way isn't enough. What do you mean that's football, it's nearly the same as Skweeks, isn't it?
  5. Get the right colourd skweek on the appropriate pad and it goes to sleep. Get all them on all the right pads, within the time limit and you are a winner!

Tiny Skweeks logo

Digital Integration £25.99

Here's a classically simple game for you. Once you've waded your way through a tedious plot about some bad tempered furry children who get lost on Earth, you can indulge in everyone's favourite pastime - a variation on the sliding blocks puzzle.

The game is played out over 101 levels, each with the same aim. Move the small, round furry creatures onto the small circles on the floor before the time runs out. Sounds easy? It is. The only thing that stands in your way is the fact that these children are monumentally stupid, and don't understand how to stop once they start moving.

Push them in one of the four directions, and they'll keep moving until they hit a wall or another obstacle.

As the game progresses, you get all the standard traps, such as arrows that turn them in another direction, but it's all fairly standard.

On the face of it, this could have become a fairly enjoyable brain teaser. Unfortunately, there is nothing in here that hasn't been done a hundred times before, or a hundred times better.

The first 20 - 30 levels offer very little challenge to the experienced gamer, and the rest of the game could be completed in a couple of hours. Don't waste your money.