According to developer Crunching Koalas, “MouseCraft” is a game that looks and feels a bit like a cross between Tetris and Lemmings, which is by all accounts, pretty much spot on. Obviously, in the former title the goal is to progress by fitting all sorts of strangely shaped blocks into place, while the latter deals with guiding furry little creatures around various maps, the goal being to save as many as possible. Needless to say, MouseCraft is indeed a very charming game with its own unique personality, but the question is – will you ultimately enjoy it?
Just looking at the main menu, there’s the main story mode as well as a great level editor (which we’ll get to in a minute). Basically, this means that once you’ve completed the run of pre-made maps you can begin constructing your own creations and sharing then with the community. As far as the game itself is concerned, there’s only one real constant to be mindful of – moving mice from point A to point B. While that might sound easy enough, you have to also take into account that they’re not going to always make it easy on you. At the same time, while you’re trying to figure out how to navigate some particularly tricky layout, there are blue shards you’ll need to collect, which help you progress forward as well.
Visually speaking, MouseCraft is alluring in its cartoon-ish art style and faux lab setting. Loading up the main game, you are treated to several cut scenes which provide the background for this little saunter. Basically, our hapless researcher smashes open his piggy bank and uses his savings to purchase some cheese – a necessary component for tests. While at first glance your knee-jerk reaction might be to say that MouseCraft isn’t all that fab, the truth is that it is quite detail-oriented and sharp. At the same time, a great soundtrack sets the mood perfectly while also driving the onscreen action forward as one might expect.
Playing through MouseCraft, it’s hard not to feel as though you are the one that’s actually in the maze, as it were. Sure, you’re guiding around cute little lab mice, but ultimately it’s up to you to forge a pathway between the start and end points. While this might sound to be extremely easy, assisting out this zany cat with his experiments, things become all the more challenging as you get a few levels under your belt. In truth, the game’s relatively straightforward set of variables opens up to allow for some really fun problem solving.
All in all, MouseCraft is an incredibly charming game that effectively accomplishes everything its developer set out to achieve. While you’re solving puzzles you’re also of course soaking in the game’s colorful atmosphere, which is mired in just a bit of humor and intrigue. Naturally, anyone who likes puzzle games or titles which many might label as being rather “cute”, will greatly enjoy what MouseCraft has to offer.
Rating – 7.2
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