Pokémon Picross (3DS)

PICROSS_BOXThere’s a new free-to-play Pokémon puzzle game that you can download on the 3DS, and this one is based on the logic picture puzzler Picross.  Use number clues to reveal pictures of Pokémon, and then catch them so they can help you solve future puzzles!  Since the game was free to start, I decided to write a little review of it anyway.

In Picross, you have a grid playfield and must use number clues on the top and left sides to figure out which squares to fill in and which to leave empty.  I’m not very good at explaining the rules further than that, but luckily the game does a much better job than I could.  You start out with 5×5 grid puzzles as a professor walks you through the basics (there’s always a professor in these Pokémon games, isn’t there?).  Then after the tutorial, you’ll venture out onto the world map to solve (mostly) 10×10 grid puzzles and reveal pictures of Pokémon.

When you solve a puzzle and reveal a Pokémon, you then catch it and can use it on future puzzles to help you solve them easier.  Some Pokémon will reveal certain squares or rows for you, while others can slow down or freeze time, among other things.  Only problem is that sometimes it can be hard to tell what skills each Pokémon have, as they don’t explain it very well.  Plus, once you use a Pokémon, you must wait a while before using it again.

You can do other puzzles besides revealing Pokémon, though.  Every day, the professor will have a training exercise for you to do.  Sometimes a rare Pokémon may appear on the map, and you have a limited time to try and solve the puzzle to catch it!  After solving certain puzzles, you may get a stone tablet that you can put in a mural, where you can solve another Picross puzzle to reveal part of a big picture.  After a while the professor will show you an Alt. Map Mode where you can solve new puzzles that are much harder as numbers count for two rows or columns, and I didn’t understand how to play those at all!

When you complete most any puzzle in the game, you’ll earn Picorites, little gems that act as the game’s currency.  At first you’ll earn a bunch, but later on you’ll earn much less as you solve puzzles.  Most anything you want to do in order to progress will cost Picorites.  Want to move to the next area on the map?  Want to open another slot to put a Pokémon in your party?  Want to cut down on the wait time to use Pokémon or refill your game play energy?  It’ll cost you.  And the further you get, the more Picorites it’ll cost.  You can buy more Picorites with real money in the in-game store, and that’s how they get you in this free-to-play game.  However, without paying anything, I was able to solve about 30 puzzles, which isn’t too bad.  I could’ve solved a little more if I worked at it, but I didn’t feel like it.  Honestly if they would ditch the free-to-play stuff and release this as a cartridge, I probably would’ve bought it.  Maybe they could do a Pokémon Puzzle Collection with games like Pokémon Trozei, Pokémon Shuffle, Pokémon Picross, and maybe Pokémon Puzzle League as well.  Yeah I think that’s a good idea!

Aside from not being able to progress after a while due to the free-to-play nonsense, the only other main problem I had with this game is that any puzzles that were larger than 10×10 were too small on the screen!  It was hard enough to use the stylus to tap the right square on the small puzzles.  If only there was an option that let you zoom in closer.  At any rate, as far as free-to-play Pokémon puzzle games go, I think I liked Pokémon Shuffle better.


Kid Factor:

Naturally, parental supervision is recommended since there are in-game purchases.  Reading skill is needed since everything is told with text, and good number recognition, math and logic skills are needed to enjoy the game, too.  Because of this, it could be considered educational.  Pokémon Picross is rated E for Everyone.

2 Responses to “Pokémon Picross (3DS)”

  1. Huge fan of Picross… Pokemon are cool… need to try this out.

  2. Nice review!

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