|System: X360 (XBLA), PS3 (PSN), PC, DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Infinite Interactive||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: D3 Publisher||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Apr. 8, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Handling Galactrix this way does take away from the story a bit, which is acceptable because the tale isn't all that gripping. The narrative unwinds through still images of your character's avatar and another's, against the appropriate background, communicating to each other through cheesy text in quote bubbles. Basically, you're fighting to learn about four megacorporations that took over humanity and are conducting questionable experiments. You can even skip the story completely by simply pressing the B button whenever these conversations pop up.
What the game lacks in graphics and story, however, it makes up in sound. The music is terrific: spacey-sounding orchestral works that fit the mood of the game and never, ever grate. Every puzzle game should be so lucky.
The controls here are workable; you pretty much just highlight gems with the joystick and press the A button. Moving diagonally with the joystick can be frustrating when you're on a timer, but there's really no better way to do it without a mouse, stylus, or pointer. Navigating between puzzles is a snap: just put your cursor on the target planet or galaxy and hit A, and your ship flies over.
Galactrix also features local and online multiplayer matches that pretty much go the same way single-player battles do. It's fun enough to play the game this way, and you can use the pilot you've developed in the campaign, but it can be hard finding matches online.
When it comes right down to it, is Puzzle Quest: Galactrix worth $20? In terms of the hours and depth of gameplay, absolutely. However, it's certainly a niche product; you'll need to be a fan of both puzzles and RPGs to get your money's worth, and you'll have to be willing to solve a very similar puzzle over and over, whether you do them all in a row or over a period of weeks. If that sounds like a good idea, go for it.
CCC Freelance Writer