Chlory : The Ocean Guard Episode ($0.99) by PAPAYA Apps is a strategy puzzle game that takes a page from percentile analysis. Don’t worry. You don’t have to do that much math to figure out this game, but you will need to spend real money if you want to get very far.
This puzzle game is made up of little cells of chlorella that are floating around the ocean, keeping things clean and fresh. Evil contaminators from outside Chlory’s village start to attack, causing the ocean to fill with PeePee, Angry, Greasy, and Nuke. To combat the invaders, the Chlories must turn the bad guys into good ones by attacking them with chlorophyll.
To turn the evil cells into good ones, drag your finger from a Chlory to it in a straight line. Chlorophyll will seep out of the green cell and into the yellow, red, brown, or black one. Here is where math comes in. Each cell has a health number. Some of the Chlories have more health than bad cells and some have less. If a Chlory has less health than a Greasy, don’t attack it. The Greasy will suck all of the chlorophyll out of the green guy and replace it with nasty brown sludge.
The gameplay is very similar to Mutagen. There are good cells, bad cells, and even neutral cells that can be turned into good ones if the bad guys don’t get there first. The art is different than in Mutegen. Chlory has cute little cells that change expressions when they are fighting for their lives. There are also hidden powers that can be activated to help Chlory win the battle.
This is where the game loses its star rating quickly. It cost money to download this game. It isn’t free. However, the in-app purchases are a guaranteed must if you want to get very far. By the sixth level of the first chapter, you absolutely have to start using the secret powers in order to win. I tried over and over and over to beat the level without using a power but just couldn’t.
You get 50 free “sunlights” when you download the game. However, the cheapest power costs five sunlights and has to be used at least twice just to get through a single level. You only earn more sunlights if you get three stars on a level and you only get three additional sunlights per level. So, if you want to get through the first world (of six), you’ll likely need a minimum of 200 sunlights. You see where I’m going with this.
It’s too bad that the developers are so heavy handed at requiring an in-app purchase for this game. It is very entertaining for fans of strategy. If you don’t mind spending a couple of extra dollars, it is sure to be a satisfying puzzle game. Unfortunately, the fact that you can’t get very far without being faced with the inevitable in-app purchase makes it less enticing. If it were free, the IAP would be a justified component. As it stands, you just sort of feel ripped off.