Dexteria Dots – Get in Touch with Math, from BinaryLabs, Inc., is a simple mathematics puzzle game which is designed for younger players but I found it to hold a remarkable amount of challenge for me as an adult as well.
The concept of the game is to create “dots” by adding or subtracting circles together, each of which have a numerical value ranging from 1-10. By dragging two “three dots” together, you get a “six dot” for example.
You can also split dots in half by slicing them with your finger or break them down into “one dots” with a tap.
What I Liked
The gameplay is simple but offers varying levels of complexity for different age ranges and skill levels. At the most basic level, each dot is colored, numbered, sized, and highlighted with smaller internal pips to match the value of the dot itself, akin to a die face but circular.
Each progressive skill level, however, removes one of these visual markers until at the highest difficulty, you are relying on size alone to determine the right combinations.
The visuals are smooth and clean, taking notes from the iOS 7 style, and each dot is actually given a personality with little sound effects when you’ve created the correct number, which adds a bit of fun and variety.
Gameplay mechanics are mostly simple and fluid – drag, drop, tap, and slice all behaves exactly as you might expect and there is a brief help page before you begin a new game that reminds you of what each action does.
There are three game modes that ask you to either add dots together, subtract dots to reach a target, or do a combination of both, though in practice I found myself using both addition and subtraction no matter what mode I was in.
What I Didn’t Like
While the game didn’t exactly need it, I felt as if some simple background music would help maintain my interest. The sound effects were cute but after a while, I muted the game out of repetition.
I wouldn’t say the game would hold my interest for a very long time, but it is a simple puzzle game after all, is intended for children, and it isn’t necessarily designed to be a 20 hour experience. There was a little bit of a lag and precision issue in instances where there were dozens of smaller dots on the screen but nothing that ultimately got in my way.
Overall, I really enjoyed this game and I believe it may be marketed to younger players but teens and adults will enjoy it just as much.
Dexteria Dots – Get in Touch with Math requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.
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