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Quarrel XBLA Review

Quarrel XBLA Review

Quarrel is a word game brought to us by Denki and Ignition Entertainment. Tom already reviewed the iOS version and loved it, so it was left to me (The Big Dawg) to try the Xbox Arcade version and see if it was as good as he said. It’s a cross between scrabble-type word play and board game strategy. Just like scrabble each letter is assigned a point value and the object of the game is to get a word bigger in value you than your opponents. Meanwhile, just like Risk the game is played out across a map and you attack neighbouring areas. Here’s what the developers have to say:

A war of words, combining anagram action with simple strategy, all wrapped up in a distinctive friendly style. Quarrel features characters of varying ability to play against, each with their own unique vocabularies. Quarrel provides a huge range of fun, from simple casual play to fiendish challenges from the most verbally-dexterous anagram minds in the world!

And what a delight this game has been to play! With its cartoon-like graphics and it’s wee characters (that almost resemble the Bomber Man cast), its full of visual charm. The main single player is all about conquering the 12 different islands. Within the islands you have territories which are evenly split between you and your opponents. On each territory you have a number of soldiers, the number on the territory represents the amount of letters you can use to make up a word with each territories allowed to hold a maximum of 8 soldiers. Just like in Risk, once you have conquered a territory all your soldiers move bar one. Then at the end of your turn you can get reinforcements. Not to worry, those territories left with one can be reinforced by moving soldiers between territories during the end of your turn. This is where the strategy play comes in as you don’t want to leave your territories exposed to attack in the next players turn. The last thing you want is to only be able to make a two letter word when you are being attacked by a player with significantly more.

The game is very easy to pick up. Thanks to the developers, there is a step-by-step tutorial which takes you through what is possible each turn. I found this to be very useful and picked up the game very quickly from there. Not only do you have a single-player campaign and the various challenges, but you also have the one thing missing from the iOS version: multiplayer! This will certainly make you play the game for much longer. Even the fans of the iOS version hated the lack of multiplayer in that version, so its good to see the developers taking this on board when bringing it over to the xBox Arcade version.

Throughout the game it is full of nice little touches, such as giving the meaning of the words you make and showing you the words you could have made. The game is available on the xbox for a mere 400MS, definitely worth the purchase. Denki went through a lot to get this game to where it is today, and the least you can do is show support and make sure they continue to make great games by buying this. You won’t be disappointed.

9 angry words out of 10


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