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Inhabitants Review

Developer: S+F Software Publisher: The Goat Store
Release Date: January 19, 2005 Also On: None

There have been countless rip-offs of Tetris, it’s just ludicrous really. Inhabitants isn’t so much a rip-off as it is a spin-off. The idea isn’t to drop oddly shaped puzzle pieces into corresponding spots on the screen, it’s to clear the screen of all the tiles. With that said, you’ve likely already played something similar to Inhabitants on your computer, but this is the first real attempt on a console that I know of and most definitely on the now defunct Dreamcast.

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The idea behind Inhabitants is rather rudimentary. You have a screen filled with blocks with the objective of clearing them. You can do this one of a few ways. You can pair two or more tiles by clicking on them using a cursor. The cursor can be easily controlled with the analog stick or the control pad. Valid pairs include anything to the right, left, above or below a tile, as well as the sign of the cross. Once paired, the tiles will disappear.

This may seem easy, but once you run low on tiles, you better start thinking strategically as you don’t want to be left without moves. What comes into play are the bonuses, earned by pairing tiles in the shape of a cross. Depending on which mode you’re playing in (Easy or Normal), your bonuses will or will not progressively build up your bonus score. In Easy, these progressively higher bonuses will move from one level to the next, making both gaining a high score and moving to the next level much easier.

Inhabitants clearly displays how fun a puzzle game can be with friends. I didn’t know what I was doing when I first played with my good friend Andrew, but we still had a good time trying to figure out how one of us beat the other each round. We finally figured out the scoring system and suffice to say, he beat me frequently. Up to four players can compete at once on one television, leaving the chance for a four-way on the Dreamcast still possible, despite the few games that actually make it work.

If you’re thinking about buying Inhabitants, chances are you’re either a collector or a diehard fan of the Dreamcast. I’m somewhat of both and despite being an independently published game, Inhabitants meets a level of quality that should be expected in a Dreamcast title. Fans of puzzle games have something to get elated about on consoles with Inhabitants. I recommend picking this game up at goatstore.com as soon as you can.

Graphics: 7
Sound: 6
Gameplay: 9
Creativity: 7
Replay Value/Game Length: 8
Final: 7.4
Written by Kyle Review Guide