Matching games like Tanglers face an uphill battle with older gamers. Their simple nature makes them an easy target to be labeled a “kid’s game,” because honestly, what’s easier than identifying two of the same thing? But despite Tanglers’ simplicity, it’s still a fun little puzzle game.
To be fair, Tangiers does have one added wrinkle that makes it slightly more challenging. While the name of the game is matching up two of the same monsters in a field of multicolored goons, the player must make sure the two matching creatures can be connected by drawing a line with a maximum of two angles in it. So creatures that can only be connected by twisting and turning through a minefield of monsters can’t be cleared off the board until simpler matches have been made first. That doesn’t exactly turn Tanglers from checkers to chess but it’s a neat way to add difficulty to the game.
Given that Tanglers is so focused on lines, it’s a bit surprising the game doesn’t actually make the player connect the monsters by hand-drawing lines. Instead, the player just taps one monster and then the other. If the match works, the monsters clear out. If it doesn’t work a little message pops up bemoaning the difficulty of the path suggested. I don’t know that it’d make for a better game to have to draw the path of connection out, but it wouldn’t be an unwelcome option, either.
Tanglers is an ideal starter-puzzle app for the astute kid gamer in the family, but adults might find themselves surprised at how much they’re drawn to the app. That all-inclusiveness is the sign of a well-made app. It might not push boundaries, but Tanglers is worth checking out anyway.