You have to wonder what the world would do if Father Christmas was ever under the weather come Christmas Eve.

Does he have a fall-back? Can he call on the Easter Bunny to don a fake beard and a fat suit to ride the skies for him? Would the Tooth Fairy dressed up in a big red and white overcoat give off the same yuletide spirit?

It's unlikely, to tell the truth. Christmas is only Christmas because of the traditions we all – including Santa – adhere to each and every year. Trying to force festivity where it doesn't fit just won't work.

Snowed off

That, in a nutshell, is exactly what it feels like to play Christmas Sudoku.

Beyond the game's title screen (which, in a small nod to its name, depicts a sudoku puzzle sat near a snowy window), there's nothing festive at all about what's been served up here.

It is, instead, simply a standard sudoku game, with the word 'Christmas' presumably tagged on to foster year-end sales.

That said, if sudoku is all you're after, the fact the game's name will only seem applicable for a few short weeks of the year is unlikely to put you off. With three difficulty levels on offer, Christmas Sudoku is a perfectly playable take on the numbers game, although the inability to mark possible options for each square is an undeniable weakness.

Nevertheless, while Christmas Sudoku doesn't alert you to any wrong answers as you go, it does let you know if you've duplicated a number by turning the offending squares pink. The game also comes with a clock, so you can measure the pace of your play as you go.

Numbers nonsense

Christmas Sudoku also appears to let you to create your own puzzles, handing you the task of placing numbers on an entirely blank grid.

This is not the treat it initially seems, however, as you'll soon find yourself running out of numbers to put in each slot.
Some kind of help would no doubt pay off here, though no help – beyond simply filling the entire grid for you – is on offer. There also doesn't seem to be a way to save the finished result, making its appearance a touch pointless.

That's exactly how most folk will feel about the game as a whole, in truth.

With scores of sudoku titles already on the market – most of which replicate the game in a more thorough fashion than this - it's hard to pinpoint just what motivated Inlogic to come up with Christmas Sudoku in the first place.

Well, beyond the obvious and rather cynical lure of the game's title, of course.