Game Reviews

Pablo Cavarez

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Pablo Cavarez

Pablo is a Mexican stereotype on a mission.

Fed up of plummy English women and that bloke who was once Han Solo getting all the spoils when raiding dark and dusty places for shiny prizes, our bushy-moustachioed hero has decided to venture where only a few dozen other gaming heroes have ever dared to tread.

Mysterious mines, pointy pyramids, cursed crypts, and, er, 'jarring jungle', because the developer couldn't think of a more suitable word beginning with J.

Pablo's mission in each tiny single-screen level: get to the exit as quickly as possible, flip the occasional switch along the way, grab gems, and viciously attack native bats in a manner that PETA totally wouldn't be okay with.

Naturally, there's a twist. Each level is a little sliding puzzle, and you have to drag the tiled pieces about until you hit upon an order that enables Pablo to go about his business without getting killed by an angry bat or ending up stranded far from the exit.

You're given a moves indicator that denotes the best score you can get on the level, but the game's also happy to let you bumble your way through - although you'll miss out on the best score if you do.

Vex Mex

This is, it must be said, a very sedate game. Being fast and accurate does reward you with a higher score, but there's never any sense of danger, nor really any excitement.

There is, at least, a certain deviousness to the level design, which often incorporates bits of ladders and ropes within its tiles.

Early on, most of these are actually red herrings. You can find yourself working on some ludicrously complex means of getting Pablo to the exit when really you need to ignore the vast majority of the blocks.

It's also worth noting that Pablo's actions are entirely automated. Once you stab the huge 'play' button after fashioning a route, he'll dodder about in a way that maximises your success in terms of gem-pilfering or wildlife-battering.

He'll only blunder into a bat and die if you haven't enabled him to happen upon a suitably sharp dagger beforehand, and he'll happily double back several times if he needs to.

Levels taco

For free you get the first 16 levels, and a single 69p / 99c IAP opens up the rest of the game, which slowly drip-feeds new stumbling blocks that attempt to thwart your progress.

There are locked tiles that can't be moved, tunnels, and sections of roof that politely wait until the precise moment Pablo's ambled by before collapsing.

There's just enough to retain your interest for the duration, and squeeze every drop of value out of the tiny price-tag, but by the time I was done I was hankering for something a bit more exciting.

Pablo Cavarez

Perfectly pleasant, yet also pretty forgettable. The kind of game you'll very happily work through on a journey home but never think about again
Craig Grannell
Craig Grannell
Craig gets all confused with modern games systems with a million buttons, hence preferring the glass-surfaced delights of mobile devices. He spends much of his time swiping and tilting (sometimes actually with a device), and also mulling why no-one’s converted Cannon Fodder to iPad.