Minesweeper is published by Microsoft Studios and is currently available on Windows Phone 7 devices for free. The game is available here.
Minesweeper, based on the classic computer game, is a great time killer, but the constant ads and the erratic zooming in-and-out distract in a race against the clock.
Fans of the original know what to expect and are sure to enjoy the game. It consists of a grid of boxes (7×7, 9×9, 12×12 or 16×16) and underneath some tiles are hidden mines (5, 10, 24 and 60 respectively). Boxes adjacent to mines have a number on them corresponding to how many mines that box touches, ranging from one to six. If a mine is dug up, then it is game over.
Since the game is a Xbox Live title, it does have achievements to be won. The added benefit is great for achievement hunters and will certainly add some miles to an already great title, or at the very least provide a sense of pride whenever one is obtained.
Replayability: Beyond the tiered skill levels, the game also has a feature called “speed”. In this game mode, you have to locate all the mines in less than 45 seconds. However, you gain extra time when you flag a mine or dig up a non-mine tile, giving more time to find the rest.
Auto-dig after mines flagged: Although zooming is troublesome, the game allows for some speed. After a mine is located, if you double-tap nearby, all the nearby boxes touching “1” squares will be dug up. This feature helps out a ton in the speed games since it cuts down the time needed to switch and dig spots you already know aren’t mines.
Power-ups: The game also provides certain power-ups you can purchase with in-game credits. The power-ups range from verifying flagged mines to shielding you from an accidentally tripped mine. The feature adds a neat addition to the classic game, as well as some interesting side-effects.
Zooming in and out: Big, clumsy fingers are problematic in this game, and zooming makes the effect more dramatic. The game starts zoomed out and you must zoom in to dig or flag tiles. Additionally, you need to zoom out to access a different part of the grid. Zooming in the grid allows for a brief sense of distortion and can throw off concentration fairly easily. This is easily most troublesome in the speed game.
Switching dig and flag option: Speed is key in Minesweeper. Unlike its computer counterpart, this version has no streamlined method of quickly selecting dig or flag. Unintended digging and/or flagging will occur.
Ad support: The constant barrages of eBay and its wide array of handbags for sale are extremely annoying, especially when you are trying to locate bombs that could explode at a moment’s notice.
Overall, the game is solid and worth the effort to purchase it from the marketplace.
Score: Buy it. You can get the game here, or by scanning the tag below.