Similar to Tiki Totems, Rescue Pine is a physics-based puzzle game that is all about saving cute little porcupines from injury. If you’re an enthusiast of adorable cartoon porcupines or just have secret lumberjack urges, listen up.
The stars of the game are the fabulously named father-son team Porcupo and Pine. Pine keeps managing to get himself stuck on top of tall, precarious towers of trees. Pine is still very young and kind of a scaredy porcupine, so all he really wants is to get to dad. Unfortunately, Pine is also kind of fragile, so if he hits the ground before reaching Porcupo, there will be tears.
What does this mean for you? Well, it means your challenge is two-fold. Not only do you have to get Pine down, but you have to get Porcupo over there to catch him. This usually means coordinating two simultaneous falls so that dad and son manage to meet at exactly the right time.
Conveniently, you have the ability to make some of the various obstacles separating the two vanish, so you can make tree trunks disappear, for example, but rock walls stay stubbornly put. Every level is a fresh puzzle, and you have to approach things strategically lest one of the roly-poly duo goes flying and the air is filled with the sounds of pathetic porcupine pouting. It’s definitely challenge, and a robust one at that, with dozens of levels to work through.
Visually, Rescue Pine is quite charming, if a bit nonsensical, what with tree trunks magically floating in the air and perfectly spherical porcupines, but the graphics are quite nice. The sound effects actually bugged me a bit, especially the tinny, shrill victory noise at the end of every level, but it’s easy enough to turn off or ignore.
Overall, the physics and interface are what really make the game, and both of those performed quite admirably. I actually preferred Rescue Pine’s physics engine over Tiki Totems, although Tiki Totems is a slightly better game. I wasn’t totally wild about the mechanic of needing to get Pine to Porcupo, but it was definitely a new sort of challenge, just not my favorite.
Additional features like OpenFeint integration round out the extras, and the developers are promising more free level packs in the future.
As physics-games go, Angry Birds this is not, but although the price is a little high at $1.99 as compared to Tiki Totems $0.99, Rescue Pine is still a solid puzzle game that’s worth a little attention.
Here is a video demo of the Rescue Pine app on the iPhone
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