Dirac – Providing Fun At A Molecular Level?

4.0 Overall Score
Gameplay: 4/5
Design: 4/5
Duration: 3.5/5

Clever game mechanic | Multiple ways to play | Smooth touch controls

May not have the long term appeal | Not always clear why your path breaks

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Connect the dots is one of the first pastimes you come across as a child. You wouldn’t think that many complexities can arise from that simple mechanic you were first introduced to. Dirac is a new iOS game from the makers of Smash Hit and Does Not Commute that takes the idea of connect the dots to all new levels. There’s a scientific set-up, and the idea is that you need to combine the colored molecules that emit from an atom. You simply draw a path to connect like colors, and you need to make sure your paths don’t collide with the other colored atoms.
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Dirac features five levels of difficulty with each one acting as a different game mode, and each one is unlocked from the outset. The difficulty increases the number of colors, speed of the molecules, and the patterns. No matter what difficulty you choose, the game is all about connecting the dots, and even trying to make an enclosed shape to clear all of the molecules within the enclosure. The enclosed shape gives you a boost, and you can also make a shape around a rainbow orb to increase your multiplier. Through it all, you’re given an endless high score challenge, and the difficulty modes push you to keep trying to better your tactics.

Dirac offers pin point touch controls to connect the tiny molecules with path drawing precision. The game pushes you towards creating the enclosed shapes as there are a lot more points involved, but doing so makes you consider how other colored molecules can get in the way of the shape you’re making. Just one wrong move, and all of the molecules along the line are zapped away without any points. The atom continues to send out colored molecules, but only has a set supply of molecules, so you need to continue to replenish it by connecting a certain number of colored molecules. The speed and patterns continue to challenge, and that can leave you missing molecules that fly off the side of the screen. There’s a lot to contend with at once, and it’s all finely presented. The long term duration is a little questionable with the endless high score set-up, but the mechanic is engaging enough to not have to worry about that for a while.

Dirac ($1.99, Universal) is well thought out and implemented touch based challenge that is well worth picking up.


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