Earlier this month, I had a look at Physical Contact: Speed by Collavier. It was a harmless, if unimpressive, entry into the Nintendo Switch library. It seems the developers are destined to make this “Physical Contact” thing a series, though. Here, we already have the second installment to it; apparently, 2048 is the base game used for this one.
Physical Contact: 2048 uses the exact same visuals and audio as Physical Contact: Speed. There’s no new music or player icons. The only difference is that instead of playing cards, the game displays 2048. If you want to see what I think of these things, you may as well just check the Speed review.
For those living under a rock, 2048 (which in itself is similar to a game called Threes) is a popular mobile game that won its praises for being an addictive sliding block puzzler. You slide tiles around to match numbers together, make them bigger, and repeat the cycle to add onto them. Physical Contact: 2048 doesn’t mess with the formula, but there is a mode that kinda does. Players can play 2048 like normal, or play up to a smaller or larger number cap like 512 or 4096 (?!). There is also a two-player versus mode where the higher score wins; the horizontal view here – allowing for the game to be displayed on the TV properly – is an improvement over Speed‘s odd decision to go vertical.
Single-player also has, for a lack of better word, a campaign mode consisting of one hundred levels. However, 2048 does not lend itself well for a level-based format. Each level plays out the exact same way, just with a slightly higher score players have to reach than the last. The base game is already difficult by itself, and having to try to reach those extremes just to move on and do it all over again is simply nuts. You’d have to be an absolute pro at 2048 to get to beat this game, whereas players that are only okay at it will get stuck before level 40.
As a result, I think Physical Contact: Speed is the superior game even it is still mediocre. Physical Contact: 2048 is more unnecessarily difficult than it needs to be. It can at least be enjoyed as a normal game of 2048 with or without someone else to play with, but I can only stress the hundred-level structure does not work. Yet, I know for a fact the style and structure will be rehashed yet again when Physical Contact: Picture Place comes out.
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