Mazes and Monsters ($0.99) by ashley jackson is an arcade adventure that pays homage to the classic gameplay of Legends of Zelda. Travel from town to town, crawling through dungeons and solving puzzles as you collect loot and kill monsters.
Players control the Hero of Destiny as he travels to distant lands, in search of treasures and monsters. His favorite thing to do is explore vast dungeons in search of coveted gems, but he also doesn’t mind winding down with an afternoon of fishing or a game with bows and arrows.
Players walk through town using a virtual joystick and attack or select using the virtual A and B buttons. To enter a dungeon, find the world map and start with the Forbidden Forest. In this land, players search through rooms for keys, maps, and treasures. There are bats, man-eating plants, and stones that block the way.
Players must destroy enemies and solve the puzzles in order to find everything in the dungeon. Once you get to the room with the gem, you’ve completed one dungeon and can move on to the next.
In the Town Square, you can play mini games if you get tired of too many dungeon crawls. You can buy a fishing pole and fish in the lake, or find a bow and have target practice in the archery shooting range.
This game has elements that are not unlike the classic Zelda game. Players can break open boxes and barrel, speak to townsfolk, and enter rooms to buy gear.
However, there are so many things wrong with Mazes and Monsters that it makes it difficult to recommend. For example, the controls are terrible. The virtual joystick doesn’t work half the time and when it does, it is too sensitive, causing you to walk right into danger when you just meant to take a step forward.
The dungeons are also kind of boring and repetitive. The towns are bare except for one or two houses to visit. Breaking open boxes and barrels is almost irritating because you have to go chasing after the coins that drop out. When you can’t move your character properly, this makes coins chasing a real pain. Sometimes, they will disappear before you can catch up to them.
There isn’t really any kind of story line to follow, either. Players just roam from town to town, exploring dungeons. There doesn’t seem to be any reason to continue on your quest. The goal is to collect all of the crystals in order to restore peace to the land, but once you’ve collected a crystal, there is no fanfare, or plot development to keep you interested.