When I first saw this game be announced for the Nintendo Switch, I wasn’t entirely sure what to think. It looked like it could be fun, but I wasn’t sure how it would play out or if there’s anything more to the formula than what was shown in the trailer. Nevertheless, a casual puzzle game for the console is always a welcome addition; now that Piczle Lines DX is out and about, I think it’s time we see if it does prove to be so.
There is a Story Mode in this game, but it’s a rather basic premise. The scientist demonstrates a machine to his apprentice (or so I think she is) that pixelates anything in the room. Only problem is that it got a hold of everything in the scientist’s house, so it’s up to the apprentice to make the building whole again.
The colorful cartoon-y characters sell the premise well, especially with the comic book-esque panels and speech bubbles. Much of the time playing Piczle Lines DX will be spent staring at a canvas with numbers, but it is neat seeing the canvas fill up over time and eventually become a pixel image (which turns into the style the characters are made with to complete the transition back to the scientist’s house).
Sounds are rather minimal in this title. There aren’t a lot of effects to begin with, and the ones used in the game have relatively little impact save for the “YEAH!!” sound clip heard when beating a level. Annoyingly, only one background song plays in every single level of the game. In long play sessions, this can be frustrating for the ears.
Piczle Lines DX is a simple puzzler where the player has to draw lines to connect pairs of the same number to each other to create an image of an object. It’s as easy as it sounds, really. For the majority of the earlier levels, it’s like as if the solutions are laid out for you since it’s so obvious which should be paired with what. Thankfully, as you get to the end of Chapter 1 or so, the game becomes more challenging by positioning more of the same number close to each other; it starts to become an exercise on identifying the right way to connect lines, and that’s easily the best part of the game.
If there’s anything Piczle Lines DX doesn’t skimp out on, it’s the amount of levels. It’s worth noting that although the mobile version of the game is free, the level packs had to be purchased by the players. Here, this Switch affair features all of the level packs sans future free updates (which will cost money on mobile). As such, it’s priced the same as the mobile game would if the player were to buy all the currently existing packs. That said, there sure are a LOT of levels. In fact, there’s arguably too many.
The big concern with Piczle Lines DX is that it can be glaringly repetitive. Levels can get really long to play through, and there are a hundred in the Story Mode alone! The level packs in the Puzzle Mode are nice additions and all, but if the Story Mode is more than enough to exhaust me, what would motivate me to do more of the same thing after that? The game isn’t bad, but it sure as heck isn’t Tetris!
Nevertheless, Piczle Lines DX is a title that can be enjoyed in small doses. The gameplay, while simple, is satisfying to execute, and what there are of the graphics have a fun appeal. It’s just too bad the music selection is terribly lacking and the game can get pretty same-y as time marches on.