Android App Video Review: Jenga

by Andrew Koziara

The official Jenga app is here, created by Natural Motion Games. It’s a very faithful recreation of the popular game which also adds lots of new innovation and flair. With good graphics and realistic physics, this is definitely one to see.

Jenga has three modes. The first is Arcade mode. A new version of Jenga involving colored blocks, bonus points, coins, and upgrades. You play against the clock to create rows as quickly as you can. If you complete a row with the same colored blocks, you get a bonus. You also get a bonus for quickly selecting and moving blocks in combos. As you play and do well, you will earn coins which can be used to buy boosts, such as extra time or wildcard blocks. The second game mode is classic Jenga, where the only goal is to build as high as you can. The third mode is a multiplayer version of classic, called pass ‘n’ play, and it can be played by up to four people.

I honestly hated this app when I first started playing it. I didn’t like the controls and I didn’t fully understand the game, but one quick trip to the games help section for some tips, and after just a little bit of practice, the controls felt natural and the game became addicting. The realistic physics and movement are done very well, and while it will never beat your own physical hand, the touch screen controls are great.

The game throws in leaderboards, achievements, and unlockable environments to entice you to keep playing and getting better, and it does a good job of doing so. It isn’t perfect though. The menus can be a little slow and unresponsive, and for some reason the game would randomly pause as I tapped the screen, despite never tapping anywhere near the pause button. But still, the occasion to play Jenga in real life only comes up once or twice a year for me, so it’s great to be able to play it whenever I want, wherever I want, and there’s no clean-up afterwards. This app will cost you three dollars, and I say it’s worth it. Check it out.

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