Overall Score 75%
Dr. Bosun has accidentally set into motion a nuclear chain-reaction - but have no fear! You have access to the good Doctor's invention; the Atomixer. With this, you have the ability to save humanity from nuclear devastation - or... not. This pitch for the game Atomixer would have you believe that you, the player, are in for a mighty challenge... and you are. Atomixer is a game requiring your problem-solving skills and in some instances, quick-thinking.
Atomixer provides the player with two modes of Play: Arcade Mode and Puzzle Mode. One selects sets of three atoms (colorful solid spheres) with the cursor and left-click the mouse to rotate the atoms counter-clockwise and right-click to rotate them clockwise. When your cursor is over any atom-set that can be rotated, that set will be outlined in blue. Your goal: arrange the atoms in color sets of three to eliminate them. To add challenge to the game, there are also "special atoms" that will either help or hinder your progress. There are also walls acting as barriers and serving as a challenge to your goals. Finally, the player can choose between three skill-levels ranging from "Lab Rat" to "Mad Scientist".
In the Arcade Mode of play, a chute at the top of the screen drops atoms randomly into the play-field. The goal here is to move atoms around throughout the playing field by matching lines of three or more atoms to earn points as well as to eliminate them from the play-field. Along with the constant fall of normal atoms, special atoms are dropped as well.
These "specials" have functions that range from eliminating the same-colored atoms in the play-field to slowing the speed of falling atoms for a short while. Keep this going until until the Atomixer overloads or you eliminate enough atoms to move to the next level. Sound easy? Do not be fooled - the Arcade Mode requires speed and critical thinking.
For something different, the player can engage in the Puzzle Mode. Here the player is faced with 30 levels of play. The goal is to clear all of the atoms in the play-field. The difference is that there is no constant barrage of falling atoms. Each level is set-up in a pattern where walls can englobe your atoms or form partitions in the play-field hindering player movement. Again, special atoms appear to aid the player in completing a level.
The Puzzle Mode requires foresight and problem-solving. The player may think that everything is going smoothly, only to find no possible way to get the last three atoms together in order to clear them. Here, a new level is opened upon the completion of the current level.
The graphics, both animated and static, are simply wonderful! Dr. Bosun, the "Mad Scientist" is as large-as-life as you choose game-play options, will tell you to "Get ready" once you have made a choice, and watches your game progress in his hovercraft during play. Everything in the environment is large, vibrant, and colorful - even the backgrounds, which change during play to add even more variety to the environment. The in-game music is simple, cheery and pleasant.
There are many aspects to Atomixer that I really liked. I have played games in the past that have offered similar gameplay, however, they are easily forgotten due to lackluster presentation. I loved the fact that the graphics were colorful, large, and bold - this kept my attention and interest going and going. With such a colorful image in mind, one cannot help but remember the game is waiting for you on your desktop.
Furthermore, I like Atomixer because it presented a challenge. The Puzzle Mode became increasingly difficult and I found myself having to really apply myself - if a game is too easy, it is easy to forget. In working the puzzles I felt as though the Professor was taunting me, sitting smugly in his hovercraft watching me at level 6. If you are tenacious as I, you too will love this game! As for the Arcade Mode, it is nonstop action and a challenge, simply wonderful!
Atomixer does everything its developer, Sharkbait Games, states that their goal is - to provide a fun game for the whole family and to provide alternative, fun games. I must confess - I would have never touched this game, for Atomixer is not the type of game I thought I would enjoy. My world is forever shattered... Sharkbait has provided a... Family game! My son and I were both thoroughly engaged and challenged, making Atomixer a pleasant surprise!
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