Games are becoming more advanced everyday, and yet some are abandoning simplicity for the sake of all these new features. Not Dots: A Game About Connecting, which is as simple and straightforward as can be. It’s a classic matching game where you simply drag a line over same colored dots to clear them from the board. It’s akin to a watered down version of Bejeweled that cuts away all of the clutter to just focus on matching. Each game is a 60 second rush with a six by six board, and five potential colors on screen. There are no multiple modes, objectives, achievements, or anything other than the same 60 second game every time.
The app also features a super flat and clean design with just a white background, and 2D colored dots on screen. As you make longer chains, and the edges of the screen light with the color you’re matching, and that’s the only design nuance of the game. It’s one of the simplest games in the App Store, and yet it has an alluring charm in its simplicity. Its perfect for quick pick up and play, but you can’t help but notice the shallowness, and repetitive nature of the game. The main problem is that the board is filled with matches of two that waste more time than actually benefit your score, and the score is all that matters in such a shallow game.
After you play a couple of rounds, you realize that the only way to better your score is through power-ups. The problem is that the power-ups cost dots, and you will almost have to purchase in-app purchases to have enough dots to afford the consumable power-ups. The power-ups implementation is a lot like that of Candy Crush Saga, but even more obligatory since the game is the same every time with only power-ups distinguishing scores. The game shines on your device with silky smooth touch controls, but there’s just nothing to it. The game is good for about 180 seconds, but then there’s no reason to ever think about it again.
Dots: A Game About Connecting (Free, iPhone) is an ornate expression of minimalism that is just too simplistic to recommend.