Sudoku Gridmaster - Nintendo DS
- For the Nintendo DS
- Platform: Nintendo DS
- ESRB Rating: Everyone
- Media: Video Game
- Item Quantity: 1
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Sudoku Gridmaster [Nintendo DS] For the Nintendo DS
From the Manufacturer
When you fire up Sudoku Gridmaster, it doesn't take long to figure out it's a game for all players of all skills. That's why it's part of the Touch Generations brand of games.
Entering numbers for each puzzle is as simple as tapping a square on the sudoku grid and then tapping a number on the 1-9 keypad on the right side of the screen. If you'd rather write the number in, you can change to this setting which replaces the keypad with a blank area in which you can write your number.
To help move you on up to the more difficult puzzles, the game offers different highlighting tools to help you work your way around the board faster. If you tap a number in the grid twice, Sudoku Gridmaster highlights every instance of that number in the 9x9 grid. This lets you quickly recognize which 3x3 square still needs the number you tapped. A number will appear 9 times in the grid. In the easier puzzles, this feature alone will help you know out many squares quickly.
When you tap a square once, an orange highlight appears, lighting up the 3x3 square in which you're currently working and the lines that intersect the square you tapped. This feature helps a ton when your deductive reasoning skills are called upon in the medium and hard puzzles. A combination of the two highlighting features can be very helpful when you're trying to solve a real doozy.
The faster you complete a puzzle, the more stars you win. If you gain enough stars, you can take a test to win a special award and open up even more puzzles!
Players will find more than 400 puzzles, all of which were selected by the original creators of sudoku. Sudoku is the most popular puzzle game in the world right now, and Sudoku Gridmaster puts hundreds of puzzles in portable form. To satisfy novices and sudoku experts alike, the puzzles come in four difficulty settings: practice, easy, normal, and hard.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Sudoku Gridmaster for the Nintendo DS contains over 400 puzzles ranging from easy to difficult, so fans can get plenty of 9x9-squared goodness to keep them busy for a long time. Those who've never played the puzzle or haven't gotten the hang of using a Nintendo DS will appreciate the game's detailed help and guidance. The game comes with practice mode to help you get a feel for the game and its rules.
However, using a stylus with Sudoku Brain Age is easier than with Gridmaster. The handwriting recognition doesn't work as well in Gridmaster and the controls are more tedious, whether you write them or tap them. Gridmaster does have a few tools that come in handy like double-tapping a number highlights all of the same number that appear in the grid. It also lets you highlight entire rows and columns.
Question marks float in the background, which gets annoying after a while. While you can change the background color, you can't turn off the animation. To move around the game, you can use write or touch mode although in write mode, you tap the screen to do a few tasks.
Most electronic Sudoku games erase the temp numbers upon entering a final number into the box, not this one. You have to select one of the four little boxes where the temp numbers live and then erase it.
As soon as you solve a puzzle, you earn stars based on how fast you completed the puzzle and the level of difficulty. After collecting a specific number of stars, you unlock bonus puzzles.
Puzzle and Sudoku fans might enjoy playing this -- it depends on how much patience the user has for its few usability challenges that slow down the game play. Maybe Nintendo will take note and improve its usability in a future release. Owners of other aforementioned Touch Generations games should be happy to add this one to their collection. Unlike many video games for handheld consoles, this one retails for a low $19.99.
This is one of the first game from Nintendo to get branded with the Touch Generations> label, which identifies titles that anyone can pick up and play even those with zero Gameboy experience and can be played at competitive levels or as casual fun. The logo for these games appears in orange and black with the letter G and a stylus. Touch Generations titles include Big Brain Academy, Brain Age, Magnetica, Nintendogs, Electroplankton, Tetris DS, and True Swing Golf. Nintendo is attempting to reach those who have little experience with video games and those who like puzzles and other games in this category.
The only nice feature this offers over pen and paper Sudoku are 2 minimal improvements: Double clicking on a number will highlight all instances of that number on the grid. And when a number appears 9 times already on the grid (not including the jotted notes) then that number fades out and you can't input it anymore. Ready for the bad parts? Keep reading....
The interface! Here are the things I hate about it:
1. The total grid takes up about 1/2 of 1 Nintendo DS screen. The upper screen mirrors the grid on the lower screen... and at the same size. There is absolutely no function for the upper screen. All it really offers is a timer. Too bad you can't turn it off to save power.
2. The temporary numbers you use to indicate possible numbers is tiny. I'd say a 4 point font. If you're over 40 years old... save your eyesight. Now imagine that font with a dim screen (since you're using an old DS model or saving power since the upper screen is sucking it all away) ... and imagine it while moving (like in a subway or car).
3. The tiny temporary numbers don't disappear when you indicate the actual number you think fits in that cell. Each cell holds up to 4 temporary numbers. So you'll have to click on the tiny corners of the cell and manually delete them.
4. No option to be alerted if you enter the wrong number in a cell. (Brain Age has this option).
5. Lousy music. Guess this is a plus too since turning off the speaker saves battery power.
6. More bad interface.... This happened to me one time: I was resuming a saved game and made a mistake when I filled in the puzzle. I wanted to go back to where I last saved.... it's not possible except by restarting the DS. I chose to return to the main menu, hoping I could do it from there. And guess what? It didn't just delete my unsaved information but it tossed out my save too.
I was spoiled because the first sudoku game I bought for DS was Brain
Age - please note that sudoku is only a part of the Brain Age software,
sort of a "bonus". Anyway, they designed it so you turn the DS 180 degrees and hold it like a book - the sudoku grid is nice and large, and
fills most of one screen. The grid navigation and number entry system are very intuitive. The only issue is there are a set number of puzzles.
I wish the designers of Brain Age would put out a dedicated sudoku game with the same interface, but one that generates new puzzles.
I'd stay away from Gridmaster. Another option is Sudoku Mania, which is better and less expensive.
If you haven't played Brain Age Sudoku, then maybe you won't have the same problems I did. If you have played Brain Age and are looking for more Sudoku, don't buy this game. Go buy a book or play on a website. This game will just frustrate you.
The system for adding in numbers has way too many steps to it. You have to tap a number pad to add in a number, instead of just writing the number into the pad. If you use the "helper" numbers, you have to select which of the four sections of a box you want to add the helper number to, then tap the number pad you want to add and then tap the full box button to get back to adding in the actual number. It's too cumbersome of a system.