Taking a Puzzling Journey with Block Legend DX

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A good friend of mine randomly gave me a copy of Block Legend DX for the PC a little while back, and given the other stuff I’ve had going on lately, it took me a while to get around to firing it up. However, the art style looked pixelated and cute, and the general concept seemed fun: a retro puzzle JRPG.

So what is Block Legend DX really like, and is it worth picking up a copy?

At its core, the game reminds me of BejeweledCandy Crush Saga, and games of that ilk…that is, until you take into account its RPG elements. The game lets you start out by selecting one of two characters (more can be unlocked later), and once you select any skills or equipment (if you have any), you’ll start your journey in one of several regions (also unlocked as you go). In each campaign, you’ll see two things of interest: a basic map near the top of the screen and the main puzzle field below it. Your character slowly marches from left to right on the map, and as he or she progresses you’ll want to turn your attention to clearing off as many puzzle blocks as possible, earning gold, experience, or buffs in the process. Enemies randomly attack you, and during these attack phases the experience blocks shift into various attack blocks (getting combos of these are what deals damage to your foes).

It’s during combat that the shield stat becomes important, because if an enemy hits you for six damage and you have no points in the shield category, you’ll take the full six damage. However, if you have five points in the shield bar, you’ll only take one point of damage. It’s basic, but it’s an effective system.

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As you progress, you gain levels of experience and get to choose what stats you believe are the most important to raise. You’ll also visit towns that contain three NPCs who allow you to pick up new quests, purchase buffs or items, or even visit a special dungeon area to seek out some special loot. Yet, there’s really not much going on in the way of a story, so even though these mechanics are here and do bolster the gameplay depth, the game is less of an epic adventure and more like a dungeon-crawling puzzle journey.

The latter fact is actually made even more clear by the fact that this is a roguelike title as well – once you die, your score is tallied up and your journey comes to an end. I can’t say whether or not there’s a true “end” to the game, but this one feels like it lends itself more to one-off play sessions than anything else.

The graphics are fun and colorful and the music certainly is rather catchy. As a whole, I don’t really have anything mechanical to critique here, as overall I’ve felt that this game plays pretty smoothly.

Block Legend DX currently sells for just $4.99 on Steam, and whether or not the game is worth the asking price will purely depend on your tastes. If you like casual Candy Crush-like experiences but want something that’ll change things up a bit for some laid-back sessions when you just want to unwind for a few, Block Legend DX should more than meet your needs. However, if you’re going into this one seeking some grand story with deep character development, well…you’ll want to keep looking.

Overall, Block Legend DX earns a grade of:

C

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