Bacterium Evolution: Help the professor to prove his incredible theory of bacteria alchemy!
We reviewed Ghost Puzzle a few weeks back and we were pleasantly surprised that the poor screenshots didn’t reflect how decent the game was. It is with regret that I have to inform you that Bacterium Evolution is the exact opposite… whereby the screenshots look fab, but the game is lacking a bit of ompf. Check out what we thought below…
Gameplay: You’re a crazy professor who has a bacteria fetish. You’re out to prove an incredible theory and so you go about placing germs next to each other in your test tank. At the top of your screen you’re given pairs of germs which you can rotate in the petri dish before dragging and dropping into your tank. Each of the bacteria are colour coded and once three or more are directly adjacent to each other then they’ll react leaving behind a levelled up germ. So three blue amoeba will react to become one green cell. Three green cells will react to become another entity… and so on. Part of the reason for playing any of the game is to see the full bacteria lifecycle so I won’t spoil it for you here. You can connect more than three cells and also create chain reactions to get more points and unlock achievements.
So there’s this kind of Dr. Mario or Puyo Puyo style connection play going on. The most accurate description of Bacterium Evolution is: a vertical Tetris column style version of Triple Town (which isn’t nearly as fun).
The aim of the game is… well… we’re not entirely sure. We think it’s to get a high score to compete with people on OpenFeint. On this note, if you do download this game to play, we encourage you to switch on OpenFeint so you at least have some achievements to play for. Before we get lost in anymore negativity, let’s hear about the good things in the game…
Music and Sound Effects: On first impressions the background music is themed towards the lab and gives that experimental feel. It does a great job of creating an aura of suspense and slight eeriness. However, it’s not a great repeating track for a long puzzle game so luckily there’s the option of switching it off in the menu. Sound effects are ok and add to the test tube sensation but I feel that more vibrancy could be added when chains are triggered.
Graphics: The images are sweet! It’s particularly cool how life is breathed into the germs through the characterisation. Colour balancing and theming is excellent and all the little touches make the overall game quite slick.
Interface: The controls are intuitive and easy to understand, though they are slightly awkward and take a bit of time to get accustomed to. It’s slightly peculiar that upon starting the game for the first time you’re not forced to see the help page, and you’re not told anything about how to control the game or what to do.
Germs make you ill: The small organisms in this game are initially bizarrely addictive because you want to find out what you get after each reaction. Unfortunately, since you’re not guided into the game and your mind isn’t set on any objective, then the game becomes stale quite quickly. Don’t get me wrong, the look of the game isn’t bad by any stretch but you are left with a rather odd feeling of why you’re playing the game. There’s stark disappointment at the end after you find out that the combinations keep morphing until the bacteria disappear. Overall this is a good concept, but it’s not enough to keep someone playing because it needs some story or campaign. (If you look at Ghost Puzzle and compare you’ll realise how awesome and useful level design can be.)
Rating: 2/5 Bacterium Evolution looks good and has great potential. Unfortunately, it’s a great example that slapping a score on a game mechanic isn’t quite enough for the average player. The developers have the elements of a decent game on their hands but need to add more to turn this into a proper game… we look forward to their future releases!
Bacterium Evolution Tips from Android Games Review
- Read the hints first because there isn’t a game tutorial.
- Take note of the special items that are given. Some are meant to help but unfortunately they can work against you as well if you don’t know what to expect.
- Use Puyo Puyo style logic as much as possible. So try to keep pairs of similar cells. That way you improve the chances of small chains triggering.