Rob Riches hands-on: a puzzling adventure where you'll always need to be one step ahead
Egyptian tombs and icy temples have nothing on Rob Riches, the titular hero from Megapop's latest block-based puzzle adventure. Armed with nothing but his trusty backpack and fedora hat, he'll brave booby traps and deadly razors to reach the heart of the jungle and all of its hidden treasures, and it's up to you to make sure he gets there in one piece.
In Rob Riches, you'll traverse a bite-sized isometric grid filled with both tricks and treats on every level. Navigating the puzzles is as easy as going up, down, left, or right, but the catch is that you have to collect all the coins to open doors and proceed to the next stage.
Mind-boggling thrills across every stageHere's where the challenge of every level comes in. While the puzzle in front of you seems simple at first, you can't just jump around willy nilly as some platforms may crumble and prevent you from going back the way you came. You'll have to plan out your moves as strategically as possible to make sure you get every coin and still find your way back to the door that leads to the next stage. This simple mechanic made me stare at my screen for the longest time, trying to plot out my plan of action a few steps ahead before actually executing them - and it's a mind-boggling thrill.
Still, to keep you from rage quitting when you're backed into a corner with no way out, you can always tap the handy reset buttons to either undo a move or restart the level from the very beginning. There are no hint systems here, but that's the fun of the challenge - you'll really have to lay out your plan of action carefully to make sure you don't get sliced into two or slip into the bottomless pit below.
No timers - no pressureThere are no timers, no point systems, and no pressure-filled leaderboards to beat - all you need is your wits and your will to clear all three worlds unscathed. Visuals are clean, elegant, and pleasing to the eye, and the background score that accompanies you will make each treasure-hunting playthrough as exhilarating as the last. The headscratchers themselves are varied enough to keep things interesting across 100 puzzles, so you'll stay entertained whether you're pushing boxes or springing off trampolines to cross ravines.
What I particularly appreciated about the game is that it saves your progress at the start of each level as well, and you can select which ones you want to re-do if you want to clear stages with the least amount of steps possible. Toggling on the step counter helps you keep track of your moves if you really want to be quick and efficient.
Overall - is it worth the price?Overall, Rob Riches is a daring adventure with bite-sized chunks and a charming protagonist. While the goal of the game is simple, getting to it is anything but - and the wide variety of puzzles to solve in small, casual bursts is definitely well worth the price tag.
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