If I’ve learned anything from Bejeweled, it’s that people are always looking for a colorful puzzle game to eat away hours of their time. Perhaps the world will find such a time-sucker in Snake 3D, a puzzle game that sets the classic Snake concept in a 3D world.
If you aren’t familiar with the arcade classic Snake, it’s that game where you control a snake/unidentifiable line, eat objects that lengthen your body, and die if you run into your own tail. The whole concept is one of gaming’s most accurate representations of nature (kidding). I guess that because we’re in the 21st century, and we slap 3D onto everything from Finding Nemo to the Nintendo DS, it was a matter of time before Snake got the cosmetic overhaul we didn’t know we wanted.
The concept turns out to be a fun take on an old favorite. While rotating the point of view with your mouse, you slither around multi-dimensional objects, “eating” mice that fall from the sky and float across the surface. I assume you’re eating them. It really just looks like they pop out of existence as your head nudges them. While graphical representations fall short, Snake 3D offers fresh puzzle mechanics, such as tunnels and the ability to play with multiple snakes. These innovated designs were fascinating, and make the game more challenging than its basic predecessor.
Unfortunately, Sir Snake has quite the attitude problem, and tends to defiantly pop off the map and run away into space. I get it; life can be frustrating when you live on a cube and endlessly chase ghost mice. It’s understandable for Snake to throw caution to the wind, break the rules, and leave home to travel the world, but it’s a pretty game-breaking bug that turned out to be both frustrating and pathetically hilarious.
There’s also a lot of graphical work yet to be completed. For now, the low levels of shadow and texture rendering make various 3D shapes difficult to identify. One level, in which you dodge falling blocks, is almost impossible to play because you can’t perceive where these blocks will land on the homogenous, depth-free pipe you’re crawling on. For a puzzle game centered on dimensional structure navigating, the environment needs to be clearer to the player both visually and conceptually.
Amidst the chuckle-inducing bugs, Snake 3D takes a well-known game style and makes it more visually and mentally stimulating. There’s various rough edges waiting to be smoothed out, which will have to include complete graphics, the passing of Snake’s angsty runaway phase, and something that remedies the creepy floating mice. Snake 3D looks to be the blueprint of an enjoyable puzzle game, but for now I’ll watch this fed-up reptile slither away into the sunset.