I love technology, so when I discover a severed robot head, my first instinct is to place it back on its body. This makes me ideally suited for the physics puzzler D-Capitatrax [99¢/HD] from developer Gamesmold. The background story is simple: a machine known as the "Golden Mistress" became jealous of the new advanced models of female robot, so she decapitated them all. However, she didn't realize the new-and-improved sexy robo-girls possessed wormhole generating capabilities, which would enable them to teleport their severed robotic heads back towards their curvaceous artificial bodies.
This game requires a combination of tilt and touch controls. Tilting your device to the left or right causes a severed robot head, and other objects in the level, to roll about. There are also two portals which you can touch and relocate, to establish a wormhole. Once the two portals are in position, you roll the head into one portal so it teleports to the strategically chosen destination. The goal is to navigate the level, collect three battery packs, then reunite the head with the body. If you've played the popular Portal series, then you'll be familiar with the concept of strategically placing portals. The developer acknowledges that D-Capitatrix is "a kind of 2D interpretation of the Portal gameplay".
To make things interesting, a number of obstacles are placed in your path, including fire, electricity, balls, bombs, concrete barriers, weight-activated platforms and nasty head-crushing wall-traps. There's also the risk of teleporting somewhere without an exit, which leaves you stranded and forced to restart the level. And if you're not gentle with your tilting, objects like bombs may slide unintentionally into your wormhole, with explosive consequences.
Some puzzles require the robot head to build up speed to travel further. This is achieved by placing the two portals in-line with each other, forming an endless loop. The teleported object will move faster and faster through the wormhole, accompanied by a satisfying acceleration sound. When you suddenly move one portal to a new location, the teleported object shoots out at warp speed. This speed burst helps the head move further or, if your bomb supply is depleted, can smash a concrete barrier. You can't tilt your device completely upside down, so instead portals are used to jump into the air.
The robot graphics are retina and lovely. The level graphics are minimalistic which is appropriate, however the fire effect does look a bit average in comparison to the quality lady-bots. Did I mention the robots in this game are sexy electronic she-bots? I can only assume that "D-Capitatrix" is a play on the words "decapitated" and "dominatrix", because once you complete a level her head spins into place and she turns and struts off with a fierce Beyonce-style, hip-waggling sashay. She also talks in an appropriately sexy computerized monotone. And the music matches the futuristic setting perfectly.
There's 30 levels to solve in total. Most levels require some thought to solve, but nothing too strenuous on the brain so far. Unfortunately, efficient gameplay is not really rewarded. There's no time-limits or move-counters, nor any three star rating system, so there's no incentive to optimize your solution or replay for better scores. In fact, there are no scores or achievements, just the satisfaction of unlocking each level and helping the cyborg sisterhood. The original release did experience some crashes, but the latest update appears to have resolved these. There's also a slight delay at times, while levels are loaded.
D-Capitatrix is a strategic puzzler that's engaging and entertaining. Who can resist unique gameplay, appealing graphics, good music and hot bots, for a buck? Not me. This is one of those games which flies slightly under the radar, but is definitely worth checking out.