Picross 3D adds a third-dimension fun to puzzle games
- Puzzle solving mechanics are fairly intuitive, puzzles themselves are varied and fun to solve
- Presentation is a little barren, blocky nature of shapes makes it hard to discern what they are
An intuitive portable puzzle game, Picross 3D offers up a worthwhile assortment of varied and challenging head-scratchers, even if they're occasionally bogged down by the game's blocky, barren presentation.
I like puzzle games a lot, even the ones I'm not particularly great at, because they're more methodical and slow-paced than action heavy games. They require the same set of skills -- precision, reflexes, spatial and logical reasoning, etc. -- but the pace is far more manageable and it's nice to turn down the volume on the twitch muscles and rely on the old noggin once in a while. This is why I enjoyed the original Picross when it debuted on the DS a few years ago, and it's also why I enjoyed its three-dimensional sibling, Picross 3D. The emphasis on three-dimensional perspectives is far more challenging, and the format works well on Nintendo's handheld, resulting in a nice little puzzle title that perfectly complements my usual puzzle rotation of crosswords and Sudoku.
Picross puzzles consist of a grid with numbers attached to each row and column; the numbers represent how many squares need to be filled in. If a row has the numbers 1, 2, and 4 attached to it, it means you have to first fill in one square, then a set of two squares, and finally, a set of four, with blank squares inbetween. You do this for each row and column to eventually end up with an image. The challenge derives from juggling the numbers and deducing which squares must be filled in from the clues provided. Picross 3D adds a third-dimension to the mix, so rather than contend with a flat grid, you have to literally dig into the puzzle and figure out blocks that are hidden from your normal view.
Rather than just shade in squares you want to keep, you also have to chip away at extraneous blocks the way a sculptor would with a slab of marble, eventually revealing a hidden shape. You can twist and turn the puzzle around and sliders let you see inside the guts of the entire puzzle block both horizontally and vertically. You press up on the diagonal pad to activate the hammer to get rid of blocks and you press right to mark the ones you want to keep. It's fairly intuitive, and the best compliment I can pay the game is that the physical mechanics never got in the way; the only real roadblock to solving the puzzles was my own ability to wrap my head around the concept of a 3D puzzle.
There is a good variety to the shapes -- each falls into a specific collection like dogs and fruit -- but it's difficult to discern exactly what you're trying to reveal thanks to the bulky, pixelated nature of the puzzles. You could usually tell what the shape was in original Picross puzzles after you've filled in enough squares, and that aided you in your sleuthing; in Picross 3D, the shapes are a bit harder to discern, making deductions more difficult. Keeping an eye out for symmetry definitely helps -- if there's a wing-shaped formation on the right side, it's a safe bet that there's one on the left -- but often, I would solve a puzzle and be surprised by what I had revealed.
Still, there are a large number of puzzles, and even though the replay value is limited -- the puzzles will never change so once you've beaten one, the only real incentive is to go back and try to do it perfectly or to beat your original time -- I felt like there were enough that I wouldn't get bored anytime soon. There are also bonus stages that require a set number of stars before they're unlocked -- you gain three stars if you solve a puzzle without making any mistakes in the allotted time -- which is a nice incentive as well.
Picross 3D won't exactly set the world on fire with its explosive graphics or its thrilling action but it's a competent and fun puzzle game. I enjoyed twisting my brain around the puzzles and I liked that it wasn't so difficult (at least on the easier levels -- I still haven't worked my way to the expert level puzzles, but I'm looking forward to it) that I felt frustrated. It's definitely one I'll keep around for those times when I need some quiet time.
Join the newsletter!
Apple iPhone X
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Nespresso Creatista Coffee Machine
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
cloudandco Smart Cane
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Toys for Boys
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
Bose SoundLink Micro
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Google Daydream View VR Headset
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Xbox One X
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 10 Pro Review: A solid winter flagship that cribs from the best
- 2 Google Pixel 2 review: not quite 'pixel perfect' but damn close
- 3 Huawei Nova 2i review: Flagship features get smuggled into the mid-tier
- 4 Moto X4 review: This is what a world without MotoMods looks like
- 5 Giabyte Aorus X9 Gaming Laptop review: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Acer attempts to woo Australian gamers with reveal of its new Predator range
- Nintendo Switch software update: What does 4.0.0 feature and how to install it?
- Robot House announce vacuum-bot adventure game ahead of PAX Australia
- Wargaming launches ANZ servers for World of Tanks
- VR fairytale game Luna due for Oct 17 release
PCW Evaluation Team
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.
- Huawei Mate 10 Pro review
- Get set for Amazon Australia Black Friday launch
- Destiny 2 PC review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- CCJanusgraph Consultant - Telco industryVIC
- CCRegulatory Project ManagerNSW
- FTInformation Security ConsultantQLD
- FTProject Administrator, IT ProgramOther
- CCDevelopers ? Multiple opportunities (Brisbane)VIC
- FTPayments Business AnalystVIC
- FTNetwork EngineerOther
- FTChange Manager- Rail / Fleet MaintenanceOther
- TPSecurity AnalystACT
- FTCUSTOMER SUPPORT OPERATOR - NOC ENVIORNMENTSA
- FTProduct Manager (IT Clinical Systems) - Permanent - Syd, Melb or BrisbNSW
- FTMid-Level Software EngineerOther
- CCJunior to mid-level - Business Analyst ? AgileQLD
- CCTransition Manger - Infrastructure ServicesVIC
- CCScrum Master - BrisbaneNSW
- FTMid-Level Drupal Developer (Brisbane Location)SA
- FTService Desk Analyst - L1Other
- CCProject Director - Gold CoastQLD
- FTSenior Change ManagerACT
- CCChange ManagerNSW
- FTSolution Architect - SalesforceOther
- TPBusiness Analysis, Design and Configuration ManagerQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystNSW
- FTLead Solutions Architect- SAP SuccessFactorsOther
- TPProject Manager - IaaSQLD