I would have more self-confidence if tofu stuck to my chopsticks like this..

Review of To-fu 2
Developer: HotGen Ltd
Price(10/9/2011): $0.99
Author’s Rating: 7

This app is good for: puzzle geeks

Ring the bell.. Go on..

 

To-fu 2 is a physics puzzle game, involving a ninja cube of bean curd, balls of chi, and pink fortune cookies. Please note that I write this review having never played the original To-fu before, so I come to this with a completely unbiased perspective of gameplay and graphics, both of which are reasonably impressive.

Our character To-fu, is.. well.. a block of tofu. What sets To-fu apart from your conventional tofu is its elasticity, along with an uncanny ability to stick to most surfaces. By touching and dragging To-fu, you can stretch him in any direction. Upon releasing him, he will catapult himself in a perfectly straight line in the direction he was stretched, and stick to the next stick-able surface he comes into contact with. The touch control is ridiculously easy to get used to, but will be slightly frustrating to the compulsive player who has to get perfect angles on every jump, since it uses real-time angles between To-fu and your finger.

All ninjas can hang upside down.

The objective of the game, is quite simply to navigate To-fu through a series of stretch-and-release jumps, to find a bright pink fortune cookie. Each maze is littered with various objects, obstacles and different types of surfaces to help or hinder your progress. Some of these objects include things like the ever-annoying crumbling blocks that disintegrate a few seconds after you touch them, the spiky floors not unlike those that were the bane of my Sonic the Hedgehog days, and metal surfaces that bounces To-fu away in perfectly reflected angle.

Tofu Yoga, Spikes and Saws.

I am also led to believe that a new feature of To-fu 2 is the ability to have a supercharged jump. Stretch To-fu for a few seconds, and his ‘chi’ will build up his elastic potential energy. Upon releasing, the speed he flies at is so fast that it can cause a tiny cube of tofu to smash thin pieces of wood into smithereens. Once again, some cleverly designed levels, bring the timing of the ‘chi’ charge up into play, adding another dimension to each level.

To make things even more interesting, each level has a fixed number of ‘chi’ balls floating around the maze. As a secondary objective, get To-fu to collect as many as possible while zipping around.

Ah.. the Cherry Blossoms. Synonymous with Asian Level completion scenes.

With 100 levels, To-fu 2 offers great value for at $0.99 (US). Many of the early stages act as introductory tutorials to the different types of obstacles or objects that you will encounter in To-fu, teaching you how to use them to your advantage so much so that it’s easy to breeze through most of the stages in less than a minute. However, if you constantly try to achieve both the optimum number of moves while collecting every single ball of chi in the process, you could easily spend 20 minutes on some of the more challenging levels. It can get a bit draggy in some of the more routine mazes, but rest assured, there will be the occasional tough nut that will frustrate you.

A supercharged tofu, not only has the power of.. but also looks like Ryu's fireball.

One of my biggest gripes with the game, is that it is absolutely impossible to complete certain levels in the optimal number of moves, while collecting every single ball of ‘chi’. This forces players to replay a level just to slowly take their time collecting every ball of chi, rather than trying to complete the level eloquently and efficiently. Perhaps this was an oversight on the developers part, but it seems more to me as a cheap way of adding replay value to the game.You haven’t fooled me, HotGen!

All in all, this is a decent game to add to your bus-trip-home/girlfriend-shopping/doctor’s-waiting-room selection of games, especially if you enjoy puzzles.

Review by Black Cows

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