Note: this blog has been migrated to Medium, with the articles here available to preserve permalinks Please see this post at https://medium.com/@ianrbuck/dots-review-1413d63f58b3
I first heard about Dots: A Game About Connecting through +Ryan Rampersad. Since he called me a "pro-gamer" I had to check it out.
After a quick 30-second tutorial you can jump straight into the game. You are greeted with a nice minimalist grid of colored dots.
As the title of the game suggests, you get points by connecting dots of like colors. Those dots will then disappear and all of the dots above them will move down to replace them.
If you create a square (of any size) you will clear all of the dots of that color. Strategically clearing dots to create squares is an excellent strategy.
Being that this is a free-to-play game, there obviously has to be some sort of in-app purchase to support it. Those would be the special abilities you see at the bottom. They can stop the clock, eliminate one dot, or eliminate all of the dots of a particular color. They are purchased with dots, which you can get by playing games or by paying a bit of money. If you are worried about it being pay-to-win, you can relax; you can only freeze the clock and eliminate all dots of one color once per game, and the abilities are cheap enough that I have always had a few of each available.
There are two modes: timed mode and moves mode. In timed you have 60 seconds to connect as many dots as possible. It's pretty frantic. In moves mode you get 30 moves. I prefer moves mode because I can plan out my moves and get the best score possible.
Since this game is all about getting high scores, you can connect it to your Facebook and Twitter accounts to compare scores with your friends. It is also easy to share a link to a page with your high score on whatever medium you prefer.
The game's simplicity is both a strength and a weakness. I had a good time with it, but I have quickly become bored with it. I'll probably revisit every once in awhile to see if I can beat my high scores, but it hasn't sucked me in the way Super Hexagon did.