There’s been a resurgence of games featuring tofu in the past year or so, but not all of them are necessarily worth checking out. Naturally, I gravitated towards a recent release called To-Fu Fury ($0.99), featuring piece of ninja tofu. I mean, when have ninjas ever let me down, right? While you won’t be running on rooftops and taking down rival daimyos in epic combat, you will be flinging yourself across the screen and collecting pieces of Chi. It’s more of a zen-like ninja experience, and that’s completely fine with me, given how great the control scheme is.
All of it is done by way of touch, where you can move your piece of tofu about in three different ways. The most basic means of movement is by way of flinging, which is done by tapping your character, and aiming in any direction on the screen. It’s very simple but multi-faceted, as your tofu will actually stretch out depending on how far you aim, which will allow him to push objects with his head. Another form of movement is walking, which is done by placing two fingers on the screen in any direction. Lastly, you can fling yourself in a curved fashion by holding down your finger on the tofu itself, and steadying your aim on your character.
Because of these three mechanics, levels can be fairly open-ended and unique, with new concepts popping up constantly. For instance, many stages require you to master all three types of movement, with challenges like walking on moving wheels to aim a perfect shot, and triggering Rube Goldberg-esque contraptions to roll balls into obstacles. It walks a fine line between frantic and methodical, and the bigger your screen real estate is on your device, the more room you’ll have to plan out your next course of action. It gets rather tough early on, but it’s always fair.
In addition to the core goal of getting through the level in one piece, you can also collect each piece of Chi (designated by blue orbs on-screen), complete the stage under a certain time limit, or finish with under a specific move count. I really love how you can go for each goal individually, as completing all three in tandem can be particularly difficult, and often requires you to complete each puzzle a specific way. Here, you can master each challenge at your own pace.
To-Fu Fury is also fair in terms of its IAP scheme. Everything you can buy is aesthetic, from different headbands to new patterns for your tofu, and that’s basically the end of it. If you log in every day you’ll get a bonus, and coins are earned at a decent enough rate where you can unlock new items every set of levels or so. Boosts are in, which grant you extra, temporary abilities at the cost of in-game currency, but they don’t feel necessary to win (with bonuses like Chi vacuums), and are reasonably priced. They also persist through death as long as you retry the level.
If you’re looking for a taxing puzzle game that won’t demand constant perfection to progress, To-Fu Fury is your huckleberry.