One of my favorite types of games for mobile gaming is the puzzle genre. Puzzle games tend to have short levels, don’t use complicated controls, and usually allow you to take your eyes off them and come back to them without losing any progress. Despite all this, it’s not really a genre I have played much on my Switch. I’ve played a few titles like Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker and Lumines Remastered, but that’s about it. Well, there’s a new puzzler called SpellKeeper on Switch, and I got the chance to check it out.
Under a spell
SpellKeeper is a logic puzzle game where you cast spells to save the butterflies in the kingdom. Like in most puzzlers, the story is a bit daft but doesn’t get in the way of providing some fun challenges. The spells that you cast are used to send energy around the tiles of the playing area. Some spells send it in a straight line, while others distribute the energy to various tiles around the one it is placed on. To complete each level, you must supply energy to all of the chrysalises in the playing area so that they can turn into butterflies. The challenge is that you are limited by the number of spells you can cast, and in later levels there are obstacles.
There are over 60 levels across four different areas. This might sound like quite a lot, but I finished the entire game in a few hours. There’s not even any reason to go back and replay them. It’s not like there are any collectables or anything. This is a very cheap game, though. For less than $6, it’s a reasonable amount of content. It’s also possible to excuse some of the visuals for this price. The general look of the game is fine. However, the image of the queen looks really rough on my 55” TV. Whether this is because the image hasn’t been upscaled from its iOS and Android roots, I don’t know.
More challenging magic
The biggest complaint I have with the game is that I didn’t find it challenging enough. It was only really the last couple of levels that forced me to scratch my head. I think the difficulty could really have been ramped up for the second half of the game. Either that or another area could have been included that was a lot harder. I really did breeze through the game, and that was without using the “hint” button. Upping the challenge would also have lengthened the life of the game. If this were a title specifically aimed at a younger audience, that would also be forgivable. As it is, though, it just doesn’t make you think enough.
SpellKeeper is an OK puzzle game. The way the puzzles work is interesting and allows a lot of different solutions and fun challenges. The in-game visuals are perfectly serviceable, but the cutscenes look rough when displayed on a large TV. The music is inoffensive and isn’t annoying but neither is it at all memorable. If you’re after a cheap little puzzler that you can easily beat in a few hours, then this is the game for you. I just wish the developer had put a bit more thought into the difficulty or added a fifth area with more challenging puzzles.
A review code was provided by the publisher.
Founding Xbox Enthusiast member and serious guitar player. Basically, Steve rocks. Need we say more?