Sega – 3DS – Out Now

One of 2012’s first releases, Crush3d is a taxing puzzle game with a twist. This is a game that requires you to find your way through different levels by shifting perspectives. Be that camera angle or dimensions, perspective is what is needed to beat each puzzle. This is all dressed up in a frankly unnecessary story mode involving a professor and his young friend/test subject. The professor has recruited Danny, the character you’ll be controlling, to attach himself to the C.R.U.S.H machine, an invention of the professors, which appears to be a result of what would happen if you were to turn the brief cases from Inception into a puzzle game simulator. However the game precedes Nolan’s mind-bending blockbuster by a few years, as Crush3d is actually a remake of 2007’s PSP title, Crush.

Once in C.R.U.S.H., Danny is presented with situations, extracted from his own memories and subconscious, in the form of puzzles. Progression through each puzzle requires that the player collect marbles, which give you points, and after a certain amount of points are accumulated then the exit opens. However, standing in your way is the obstacle known as physics. Starting in a 3D environment, the player must change the camera angle and dimension to get through. Changing between 3D and 2D is vital to completion of the level, but it’s tougher than it seems. The term for this change of dimensional perspective is to ‘Crush’.  There are also 5 different camera angles. There’s a top down camera that allows you to see things from a birds eye view, and there’s 4 different cameras to show each side of the cube shaped playing area. When the level is crushed, this turns that particular point of view into a 2D environment, and depending from which camera was active, the environment is different. This allows you to reach a previously unreachable platform or item, and also activate hidden bonuses and pick-ups.

The game starts with tutorial after tutorial. And while this does drag, it’s necessary as there is quite a lot to take in. However, after the initial stages are through, things start to pick up, and as they pick up, they also get more and more perplexing. After several levels, the environment changes, meaning you take in a busy metropolis, a sun-soaked beach etc, and while these only provide an aesthetic attribute, it does add an element of variety to the game. Luckily, just as you start to get fed up the environment changes, making things feel fresh once again.


As well as the main story mode, there are a few extras too. Trophy mode, which is basically a time attack mode, requires you to get all pick-ups in the process of completing the levels. Not as simple as it may seem, as time is very limited and if you don’t complete the level perfectly, time’s up and you have to restart. It’s not a mode designed for those who send the controller flying across the room when they get frustrated. There’s also a section of extras that allow you to view concept art and change the colour of Danny’s robes. Yes, he wears a dressing gown.

Crush3d is quite the brain-bender, and for fans of the genre, this should provide plenty of enjoyment. While the difficulty increases as the game progresses, the curve isn’t as such to put off the less seasoned gamers, and although it adds that extra depth and bit of shine to the game, the 3D isn’t entirely relevant. Yes it looks great, but has no bearing on the gameplay whatsoever. Crush3d is a must for all puzzle game fanatics.


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