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‘Blueprint 3D’ Review – Simple and Elegant Motion Puzzles

TouchArcade Rating:

I sat down with Blueprint 3D [$0.99 / HD] last night, planning to get a feel for it. When I got back up, I’d 3-starred every level and earned every achievement. It isn’t terribly hard, and it’s short enough to be completed in under an hour, but I’m not complaining. Rarely do you find a game that’s so simply entertaining.

When you launch a level in Blueprint 3D, you’re presented with an explosion of scribbles. With single finger swipes you rotate those scribbles until they start to line up into a recognizable image. Tweak and reposition it until it’s right, rotate it with two fingers, and you’re done. This only takes a few seconds once you get the hang of it.

You’d think that would make for an unsatisfying experience, but with unbroken music the levels flow together into themed packs of 35 or so. As you complete the levels in rapid-fire style, you earn stars and your completion time adds up. So instead of being per-level, the challenge is on a per-pack basis. Can you get your completion time under 5 minutes? Can you collect every star in a pack? Most puzzle games involve hitting your head against a wall at least a little bit — Blueprint 3D is a much faster, smoother experience.

It helps that the packs are charming, with Da Vinci-esque devices to reveal in the Medieval pack and stuff straight out of Star Wars in the Space pack. I want more, though. The final packs are Tech and Transport, which left me a bit cold toward the end of the game. Bring on the niche packs, filled with geeky references. Or taxonomic drawings of plants and animals given this treatment. The possibilities seem nearly endless, and FDG Entertainment are eager for ideas. You can share yours with them in our discussion thread.

One of the things that makes Blueprint 3D so successful is its attention to detail. The game’s theme changes to an appropriate style for each level pack, electronic for the Electronics pack, and more like something out of Metal Gear for the military pack. The desktops change too, and the blueprint styles and tools.

True, the game is simple. Once you figure out how to spin a blueprint around and line up one obvious spot or another, you’ll rarely run into trouble. If you do, you are given five level skips (you can buy more, but you really shouldn’t need to). But simple isn’t always bad, and here it works beautifully. If you want a taste first, the team also made Starlight, a flash game with a very similar style of play. If you need a whole lot of bang for your buck, you might want to look elsewhere. If you’re down with small and charming experiences, though, Blueprint 3D deserves a look.

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