Puzzle Chronicles DS Review

Short Version: If you have a DS and loved the Puzzle Quest series of games, then definitely check out Puzzle Chronicles.

Game Rant’s Marc bell reviews Puzzle Chronicles for the Nintendo DS

Puzzle Chronicles comes to us from Konami and Infinite Interactive, the makers of several successful crossover puzzle/RPG titles such as Puzzle Quest and Puzzle Quest: Galactrix.  While at first glance this might appear to be the same game with a different skin, let me warn you that it is not!  Other than the fact this is a puzzle/RPG hybrid, the similarities stop there.

With Puzzle Chronicles, your gameplay area is set up more like two Tetris boards turned sideways and placed back to back.  As colored gems fall into the gameplay area from the side, your goal is to match gems and gather skulls.  After collecting a certain number of skulls the center line moves closer to your opponent, giving them less room to work.  The battle ends when one player’s gems hit the top of the game play area much like in Tetris.

Puzzle Chronicles puts you in the role of a lone survivor from a barbarian tribe, hell bent on finding those responsible for killing your kin and exacting a slow, painful dose of revenge on them.  The story feels very Conan-esque and makes me want for a new Conan feature film starring the “Governator” himself (the Conan remake stars Jason Momoa).  On the road to vengeance you make some new friends, meet some royalty and capture some pets to use in battle.  This game is very deep and is filled with everything a good RPG should have like magic, weapons, Armour, leveling, side quests and even grinding!

Puzzle Chronicles has a mini game mode which gives you an opportunity to hone your skills for later use in single player story mode.  It also has a multiplayer mode with local, Wi-Fi connected, head-to-head battles to keep you coming back for more.

The music and score in this game are pretty awesome.  I know, it’s surprising to hear that a DS puzzle game has a great soundtrack but it’s true. It’s all very Bedouin sounding and perfect for the milieu.

While this game is extremely fun, it’s definitely not something gorgeous to look at.  The graphics are a little simple and remind me of the kind of thing I used to see when playing B.C.’s Quest for Tires on my old Commodore 64.  But graphics aren’t the reason we’re playing this game, are they?

The game may not be perfect for everyone but I think it’s a great way to help some of us guys bring our girlfriends into the world of RPGs.  I know my girlfriend hates games like Fallout 3 and Diablo but loves games like Bejeweled and TetrisPuzzle Chronicles gives fans of traditional puzzle games a leg up that will help them feel right at home with this game, even if the RPG elements might seem a little foreign at first.

When asked, what is best in life? I can now reply, to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to play Puzzle Chronicles.  If you have a DS and loved the Puzzle Quest series of games, then definitely check out Puzzle Chronicles.

What do you think of Puzzle Chronicles?  Got an opinion on Puzzle/RPG hybrid games?  Tell us what you think in the comments below.

Puzzle Chronicles Released January 28th, 2010