It’s not often that two games are released in a matter of days that essentially do the same thing.

Color Collider and Drop the Chicken may look different, but their physics puzzle play stems from the same primary idea. Unfortunately, the latter was rightly chastised for trying to shoe-horn a Cut the Rope-style reward system into gameplay that was completely unsuitable for the form.

Color Collider, on the other hand, tries to do the same thing with greater success. While trial-and-error gameplay is still the focal point of this physics puzzler, it's balanced in just the right ways so that it's more fun than randomly frustrating.

Release the balls!

Each of the game's 60-plus levels presents you with a number of ball-bearings placed inside a release chute. Pressing the button to the side of the chute releases them into the play area below, the aim being to safely collect enough of the balls in a series of containers at the bottom.

Naturally, things are a lot more complicated than just pressing a button and dropping balls from the sky. Each container is colour-coded and only matching balls are accepted.

In every level, you have a limited selection of increasingly complicated tools to ensure the right colours make their way down into the right containers. Any ball that touches the red side of a triangle, for instance, turns red. Should said ball then touch a blue-sided triangle on the way down, the colour changes to purple.

Ball dropper

Color Collider doesn’t just stop there, though. Instead, it keeps piling on new gameplay elements to stretch your noggin to its limits.

A variety of elements - fixed triangles often placed to cause the maximum disruption to your plotting, teleporters, 'washers' that remove all colour, and black holes that create their own localised disruption to the path of the balls - have to be taken into consideration.

Thankfully, there are no pointless star systems in place hindering experimentation, and restarting a drop takes the briefest of pauses to execute.

Test subject 3342F

This focus on working through levels by analysing what went wrong can be engrossing, especially in the second half of the game, where each level is a minefield of obstacles, coloured objects, and dead-ends.

While the gameplay should appeal to most iOS gamers, it’s a shame the game looks so sterile and unwelcoming. This does mean that the colours and objects are easy to pick out, but the cold presentation doesn’t exactly inspire much enthusiasm when there are so many other, better-looking puzzler games.

Whereas competing titles lack sufficiently compelling gameplay to match their glossy graphics, Color Collider possesses finely-honed gameplay and dependable physics, so it's more likely to have you coming back for more.