Fresh Look’s choice of puzzle games in Apple Arcade

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I realized recently that I haven’t spent any time on Apple Arcade for the past few months. To rectify this and justify my continued subscription, I downloaded a few recent versions. Here are my thoughts on some of the latest games released on Apple Arcade in September and October.

Point

Point is a unique puzzle game that arrived on Apple Arcade last Friday. As someone who loves embroidery, I was immediately intrigued by these embroidery style puzzles. Point it really looks like sudoku meets paint by number. Each level consists of a design in an embroidery hoop which is divided into smaller sections.

Each section is a grid puzzle with numbers in some grids, but most grids are empty. The numbers are colored to match the color of the yarn used in the pattern.

I found the beginning levels very easy. You only have limited access to hoops until you reach a certain level in the title, then everything opens up. There are definitely some tricky puzzles, but nothing too difficult. The only time I had to use a hint was when I didn’t realize I hadn’t erased the whole section. The only remaining section had been completed by accident and prevented me from solving the section. The hardest puzzle I’m currently working on is the limited seasonal puzzle. In the time it would take me to complete a larger puzzle, I only completed a quarter of this puzzle.

Point is ideal for people who like simpler level puzzles. Don’t expect a big challenge, but it’s not a crazy job either. The main attraction with Point is its unique puzzle style and adorable embroidery designs.

Garden tails

Garden tails is a simple match 3 game that is very charming. Garden tails arrived on Apple Arcade in mid-September. As a longtime fan of garden landscapes, I was immediately drawn to the cute animal and garden theme. Most available bonuses offer the standard assistance, such as removing a line of tiles or all tiles of a certain shape. Some of the bonuses are more interesting. Powering up the bees works like 2 bombs which are triggered separately. Where things really get different is that two bonuses can be combined for increased effectiveness. My favorite is the bunny and butterfly combination. The butterfly removes all tiles of a given type, and the rabbit removes a row of tiles. Combined, the butterfly spreads bunnies on all tiles of a chosen type, so you can have a dozen bunnies and more knocking out rows of tiles.

Completing levels provides currency to add more plants to the garden. Garden tails also identifies the name of each type of plant and gives a brief description of each, which is a nice educational touch. By adding more items to the garden, you increase animal happiness, allowing you to unlock new animal friends. The animals are all very adorable, and between some additions to the garden, the animals will briefly chat with you.

Garden tails is a great title for people who love match 3 games. It’s very relaxing between the soothing background music and the adorable fluffy animals. With an interesting twist on bonuses and unlimited lives (because it’s on Apple Arcade), Garden tails stands out as a great way to unwind.

The Gardens Between+

The last title I tried was The Gardens Between+. This is another interesting puzzle game that released on Apple Arcade in mid-October. The title was originally released in September 2018 and is currently available on PC, Play Station, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, Stadia, and mobile. Although it’s a highly decorated game, if you’re like me it went under the radar or maybe you weren’t a big gamer in 2018. Anyway, if you have Apple Arcade, now is your chance to enjoy this beautiful and surreal game for free.

The Gardens Between+ unlike any puzzle game I’ve ever played. Each isometric level consists of a 3D island puzzle that you solve by manipulating time to bring a sphere of light to various checkpoints. The really intriguing thing is that the time manipulation is not limited to the two main characters. There are various objects that either character can interact with to manipulate objects or events on the level. Such an element manipulates time on a separate “time segment”. On one level, a bowl of popcorn is knocked off the sofa. On another, a variety of children’s toys are disturbed. For these levels, you must manipulate two separate time segments to solve the puzzle. With multiple moving pieces, you may need to play a section of the puzzle multiple times to figure out all the pieces.

If you are looking for a unique take on puzzle games, The Gardens Between+ is for you. The title doesn’t take very long to complete, but the limited levels offer some great puzzles.

Let me know in the comments which games you’re currently playing on Apple Arcade and which new releases you’re most excited about. Until next time, stay cool, be you. Goodbye!

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Raymond I. Langston