First Impressions – Circles, Circles, Circles

circles-circles-circles-2Circles, Circles, Circles is another mini from Indian developers GameShastra Studios, the team behind block-moving puzzler D-Cube which was also released this week. The two games couldn’t be more different though, with Circles, Circles, Circles being a classy Sudoku-style numerical puzzler.

The game looks pretty slick and professional when you fire it up, with the shiny bright gold lettering on the Start screen against the bright blue background reflecting the colour-co-ordinated nature of the gameplay.

The actual playing area consists of a large circle containing several groups of white rings, all of which house four circles, either yellow or blue, and one of which also has a golden zero in the centre. You always control the blue circles. The object of the game is to either place four blue circles around the golden zero, or to destroy all of the yellow circles.

Your means of control is a purple ring, which can be moved onto the other white rings using either the directional buttons or the analog stick. You can then press either the L or R buttons to rotate the purple ring either clockwise or anti-clockwise. You can’t move rings that don’t have any blue circles on them.

circles-circles-circles-1Each of the blue and yellow circles has a number inside it. When you rotate the ring with a group of circles on it, the group with the highest value will eliminate the other. So, if you have two blue circles that are each numbered 2, and two yellow circles numbered 0 and 1 respectively, the blue will eliminate the yellow because 2 + 2 = 4, which is of course greater than the sum of 1 + 0. If you rotate a ring when the blue and yellow circles hold equal value, nothing will happen because they cancel each other out.

Thankfully the game does all the calculations for you, but of course you need to make a quick mental calculation yourself before you make a  move, as if you rotate a ring where the value of your blue circles doesn’t add up to a score greater than the value of the yellow circles, you’ll lose your blue circles. So the golden rule of the gameplay, and in life, is: think before you rotate!

Although the gameplay might initially seem a little hard to grasp for someone who isn’t a fan of numerical puzzlers, Sudoku fans will have no trouble, and for the rest, once you’ve got an idea of the basics the game seems to play very smoothly, and it’s a lot of fun thinking strategically and planning your moves ahead. Stay tuned for the full in-depth review.

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