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Portabliss: Pushmo (3DS eShop)


Did you know that you can download handheld games now? That's amazingly convenient! The only inconvenient part of it is finding the right games to buy -- and that's where we come in, with our Portabliss column. In each installment, we'll tell you about a downloadable game on the iPhone, iPad, Android device, DSi, 3DS, PSP, etc. Today: Pushmo.

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to address Pushmo. I feel bad thinking that there's some hypothetical person out there who may not be playing Pushmo yet, simply because Joystiq hasn't put its seal of approval on it. I'm not being conceited, just worrying that such a thing is possible.

Intelligent Systems' Pushmo is definitely one of the best games on the 3DS, and one of the best puzzle games released this year. It's this year's Picross 3D. And it's seven dollars.

Gallery: Pushmo (3DS eShop) | 8 Photos

It's sort of reminiscent of Catherine, except cuter, without any meditations on adultery, and less speed-oriented. It's a series of self-contained puzzles, many shaped like pixelart objects, in which the goal is to reach the top by pulling sections out to make steps. You can only pull objects out three spaces, meaning that you'll have to do some strategic rearranging as you try to climb anything more than three spaces high.

As the game progresses, you'll also have to deal with quirks like manholes that warp you from one block to another (forcing you to have open spaces on both sides), and buttons that automatically extend a block all the way out. These tools will be put to use in incredible towers of colored blocks, that you might play for half an hour or more before the trick presents itself.

If the suite of pre-made levels isn't enough for you -- or, more likely, you just get stuck and want to try something else -- Pushmo also includes an editor to make your own puzzles, and allows people to share their puzzles easily through QR codes. Here, have a few dozen!

Pushmo is available for $6.99 on the 3DS eShop. We're always looking for new distractions. Want to submit your game for Portabliss consideration? You can reach us at portabliss aat joystiq dawt com.

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