Combining gameplay elements of Tetris and Connect 4 whilst still managing to feel unique in its own right, Revertis 2 by Ravensburger is an enjoyable and addictive abstract puzzler which will have you skidding across its icy surface for one more go.
An ice block floats in space, pocked with a series of round holes in its surface. Beside this in his spacecraft hovers the alien Vali, whose task it is to slot the never-ending series of coloured lights into the block before it freezes forever.
Make sense? It doesn’t matter: this abstract game’s premise is largely irrelevant, beyond adding some spacey graphics and ambient sounds. What is important is the gameplay: a clever mix of styles which requires you to think ahead and – in the game’s more challenging modes – react quickly at the same time.
Each turn, you are given a sequence of four coloured lights, each consisting of one of three colours. You cannot alter the sequence, but can choose where on the playing area to place these, as long as each light is connected to the other horizontally or vertically. Depending on the difficulty level chosen, points are awarded for connected lines and blocks of lights of the same colour, which then vanish from the board. As in Tetris, the challenge is to slot in the sequences of lights in such a way as you continue to clear space on the board: run out of room and its game over.
Two game modes are on offer. Free play allows you to select how many lights are required to make a block, and in what configuration (horizontal / vertical only; or connected diagonally; etc). Additionally, in free play you can select between ‘normal’ and ‘arcade’ modes: the latter adds gameplay elements such as blocked holes in the board, powerups and holes already filled with lights of a certain colour.
Survival mode is played on the same board, but in a sequence of challenges against the clock. Here, you must score a certain number of points on the randomly generated difficulty level before moving onto the next challenge. More points are awarded for clearing the levels quickly, and achievements are unlocked as you progress, making this quite an addictive mode for high score table junkies.
Revertis 2 is pleasing to look at and listen to, with easy controls and a clear interface. Commendably for a colour-based abstract game, Ravensburger have seen fit to include a number of different colour combination options for the light orbs – including one where colours are replaced by symbols, ideal for colour-blind gamers.
Strictly a solo affair, Revertis 2’s longevity comes from unlocking the achievements and progressing through its zen-like levels (from ‘baby’ to ‘forefather’). The solid and satisfying colour-matching mechanic is kept alive by the hazards and powerups (on arcade mode); and by the random nature of the gameplay itself, providing a challenge for gamers of all abilities.
Revertis 2 is an ideal title for fans of abstract games looking for something unique. And although it doesn’t have quite the same addictive quality as Tetris, this deep space puzzler isn’t a million light years away from coming close.