To-Fu Collection (DS)

Help a living slab of tofu become a “Master of Chi” in this action-puzzler game for Nintendo DS. Use your stylus to stretch, stick, and sling the training tofu around obstacle filled levels and make it to the goal. Avoid spikes, lasers, and other traps as you bounce around trying to collect as many floating blue ‘chi’ orbs as possible. This collection contains two To-Fu games, previously on iOS and mobile devices.

In each level, you must navigate around a maze avoiding spikes, lasers, and other harmful obstacles. To move around the stage, use the stylus to stretch Tofu like a rubber band, then release to send him flying. Tofu can stick to walls and ceilings, but some surfaces will make him bounce off of them immediately or slide down due to gravity. You win the level when you touch the goal: a floating pink fortune cookie kitty face…thing.

There are two other sub-goals in each stage aside from reaching the end. You can try to solve a level with as few moves as possible, like reaching par or under in golf. But you won’t get penalized if you use more moves, though. The other side goal is to try and gather all the floating ‘chi’ orbs in a level. You’ll want to collect as many as you can regardless, because that’s how you charge up the gold tofu option in the pause menu. When activated, the gold tofu allows you to essentially skip a difficult level. But use this feature sparingly and wisely, as it takes a while and more ‘chi’ orbs to charge it up again.

This collection has both the original title and its sequel. Both games are essentially the same. You view the action on the bottom screen and can see achievements you’ve earned and your ‘chi’ orbs and moves on the top DS screen. The sequel has different puzzles and achievements, and a couple of slight improvements also. The stages are a little harder in the sequel, and the tutorial levels take less time in showing you the basics. In the second game, when you stretch Tofu and hold it, a gong will sound allowing your tofu to charge and break certain walls. You can also unlock costumes to dress Tofu up in the sequel as well. Both games have about 100 levels each, plus some bonus stages, so there’s plenty to do here. The To-Fu Collection is a surprisingly fun DS title that really takes advantage of the handheld’s strengths. Pretty good for a game I’ve never heard of before!

Kid Factor:

To-Fu Collection is rated E for Everyone with an ESRB descriptor of Comic Mischief. Violence is only cute and cartoony here. If Tofu gets hit by a laser, he just looks like he got electrocuted in a Looney Tunes way. If he hits spikes or other dangerous objects, he just falls off the screen with an adorable little sigh. Reading skill is helpful for the instructions, but most everything is easy to figure out just by playing. Younger gamers and less experienced players might get frustrated at the more difficult levels, though. But it’s still a great game the whole family will enjoy.

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