Hands on with Doctor Who: The Mazes of Time for iPhone and iPad
Tweed through Time
Out of all of the BBC’s modern reboots, arguably none has been quite as successful as Russell T. Davies’s reimaging of Doctor Who.
The programme managed not just create TV spin-offs in the form of the so-so Torchwood and the touring live show, but it drew large portions of the population back to UK sci-fi after a decade of being out of favour with programme makers.
Now the Doctor and his fruity assistant are on their way to both the iPhone and iPad in the shape of Doctor Who: The Mazes of Time, and we had an early sneak peek to see how its shaping up.Grand theft doctor
As with Top Gear: Stunt School the BBC has looked outside its own walls for this title, calling in the expertise of Dundee-based TAG games, makers of top mobile game Car Jack Streets to come up with something for the Doctor.
Unlike the GTA-like Car Jack Streets, Doctor Who is a far more family-orientated title, with cartoon-like representations of both the Doctor and Amy Pond, his assistant, along with a range of villains from the show.
It plays out a lot like a Lost Vikings-lite style puzzler, with the Doctor and Amy equipped with abilities that complement the other. This effectively means that the Doctor does generally manly things (despite technically being an alien) like pushing around errant blocks, while Amy does more lady-like things, such as, erm, crawling on her knees.Cybercrime
Our playing session took us through an old Incan Temple infested with Cybermen, and inside the Tardis, trying to re-activate the power in order to save a family trapped in time (due to some naughty Daleks, no less).
The dialogue is excellent between the pair as the game progresses, with Amy and the Doctor sparring off each other with witty asides and observations on events as they occur.
For the most part, we spent the time pushing a series of blocks around in order to safely navigate each scrolling ‘room’. There were a number of traditional obstacles in the way of the pair – spikes pits being the most frustrating – as well as a few appearances from everyone’s favourite robots, The Cybermen, who walked around in a path.
The puzzles themselves are unlikely to pose too much of a problem for more seasoned gamers (although, having said that, the tardis’s power generator was a bit of a pain to work out), but as the art design of the characters suggests, Mazes of Time is aimed more at the younger gamer.
We’ll see if it has the sonic screwdriver to our hearts when it’s released later this month.