Sugar, Sugar

on Sunday, February 27, 2011
Sure you may have your meat boys, and killer oranges, but what about the sweeter side of the flash game food chain? What about that all important pure white, pixel high morselette that is the common sugar cube? Fear not, for sugar, sugar is here to remind us of how important that tiny cube is, and how much of a chore it is to pour out of the end of a comma.

Sugar, Sugar is a game developed for Armor Games by Bonte Games. Sugar, Sugar's basic setup is that you have to get sugar into a cup by drawing lines. Using a simple physics systems, the sugar pixels glide down the paths you make and into the sugar cups. The challenge of the game comes in three parts. The first is that you can't remove a line once you've created it. The second is the fact that certain cups need cerain color sugar, which must be passed through goal posts to change the color. And the third is that the comma contains finite sugar. A fourth challenge that isn't intended by the game is the fact that lack of being able to draw smooth lines with a mouse can royally screw you because of the way the physics system operates. A straight line tool would've been much appreciated and made the game twice as easy by removing the fake difficulty of having a high sensitivity mouse.

The puzzley game is fun, until you realize that you are spending 90% of the time waiting on sugar to move. The sugar physics apparently does a collision loop and friction test of every single piece of sugar in a mound, meaning that large sugar piles will roll down hills at a speed of somewhere between a crippled turtle, and snail with a pebble tied to it. naturally, spending 30-60 seconds waiting on each mound of sugar to slowly roll down a hill does not a fun game make, and the less steady the line you drew, the more time the sugar takes to settle.

For a game that uses only sixteen colors at a time however, it looks pretty damn spiffy. Its all pixel art, naturally, but the way the sugar flows just looks so...right, and the sugar can pretty much fill up anything with a pixel wide gap in it, with no visual problems. All the backgrounds and foreground blend perfectly, and there is never any visual miscommunication.

As far as the actual puzzles go, they are rather clever, but about half of the levels feel like repeats. I think thirty was too high a number for the developer to shoot for. I personally only hit twenty-five before I stop playing, as I realized I had watched the same piles of sugar fill the same cups before, each board only changed slightly. I think twelve to fifteen unique levels would've been a better idea for this game.

Overall, I think Sugar, Sugar is a game with a hell of a lot of wasted potential because of how unpolished it is. If it weren't for the fact that sugar took forever to settle and that I was essentially being punished for having an unsteady hand, this game would be an amazing puzzle game. But as it stands its annoying, tedious, and probably not worth your time.

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