I had previously downvoted this game, citing many bugs and frustrations with the control scheme and the GUI. But after an incredible show of dedication from the developers in addressing and fixing (nearly) every one of my complaints in the "massive invisible" patch, I'm finally giving the game a thumbs-up. Very impressive, guys! Previously, I felt that this game might have perhaps gotten more attention and understanding as an "early access" title, but now it has earned its status as a finished product, one which can be built upon. I'm confident that the small number of remaining issues left will be addressed, and even if not, they do not detract too much from the game's quality.
The puzzle design of Chuck's Challenge can only be described as some of the best you will see in any puzzle game, and that's no surprise because the game and most of its levels come from the brilliant mind of Chuck Sommerville, the man behind Chip's Challenge. While the puzzles are quite a bit smaller in comparison to Chip's Challenge, they are so deceptively simple that sometimes they blow the mind. You could spend a half-hour tinkering with a stage that's so small and simple and has such few moving parts, and in the end you can only blame yourself for not seeing that one obvious answer that was hanging in front of your nose the whole time. And that's one of the highest levels of praise I can offer to any puzzle game.
The game has some great anti-frustration features, namely the ability to undo any move at any time, and even to replay previous solutions (a brand new feature from the old versions)!! The undo functionality was previously horribly broken and allowed for bad solutions, but the "massive invisible" update has rewritten it from scratch seems to have made it quite bulletproof. Just be warned, if you're aiming for speed medals and records, the rewind feature won't help you much because it adds +5 seconds to your time whenever it is used, but it's great if you're trying to solve a puzzle for the first time and accidentally push a block into a corner or something.
The GUI has been criticized for being designed with touchscreens primarily in mind, but enough improvements and concessions have been made for mouse-and-keyboard users that it's not so much of a problem anymore.
Oh, and let's not forget to mention the level editor. Though the interface is slightly quirky, it's a cinch to hop into the editor and prototype a level idea, tinker with it, then upload it for the world to see into an ever-expanding database of user-designed levels, complete with individual leaderboards. The game has even implemented a new feature letting you click on a specially-formatted URL which will launch Chuck's Challenge and load a custom level automatically. Though it could stand to have a few more features (functionality for level packs, or some way of knowing which custom levels you've beaten), an eternal supply of user-generated content is the heart and soul of a game like this, and it doesn't disappoint.
Some small quirks and bugs still exist, but they are absolutely benign compared to what they were before, and no longer detract from the core of the experience: the bliss of solving awesome puzzles. Overall, recommended for all fans of Chip's Challenge, as well as any newcomer or veteran to the block-pushing puzzle genre.
Here's my upvote, developers. You've earned it.
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