What is Pixel Puzzles: Japan?
Pixel Puzzles: Japan is a game where you have 19 (+2 added for free) jigsaw puzzles to solve. The game is nicely designed in terms of UI graphics, but there are two moments that lead to huge frustration:
First, the detection of what puzzle piece you want to take is horrible. So it comes down most of the time to randomly getting a piece, throwing it away, etc, or clearing the route of the piece you want per right-click and hoping you can somehow catch it.
Second, some puzzles have too large spaces where absolutely nothing is with the exception of one color. This makes the game coming down to trial and error, clicking through numbers of absolutely identical looking pieces and hoping it fits.
The graphics itself are nicely done, as I said, but the motifs for the puzzles are sometimes poorly chosen.
The music is annoying. One sample sounds like taken from the end of a Settlers 4 tune, together with exactly the same annoying bling sound that makes you think your microwave has finished working / your door has ringed / whatever you have that sounds like it. The sound effects are nothing special as well. I turned it off and heard my MP3s instead.
The game is played entirely with the mouse, but unfortunately it is often impossible to get exactly the puzzle piece you want since - if several are above each other - a certain one is always picked instead of the visible one you click.
Overall you get a jigsaw puzzle game that is frustrating after you did half of the puzzles. The achievements are easy to do, however, they just require a lot of time and frustration tolerance. You can expect taking around 12 hours to solve all puzzles, which also gives you almost all achievements. The two you don't have by then are done in seconds and you can find out what to do by their picture.
You can find jigsaw puzzle simulators on the internet that are more fun since at least you can pick the pieces you want there. Also don't get confused by the title: Apart from the puzzles showing Japanese scenes, there is nothing about Japanese culture, so this isn't a game for the hardcore Nippon fans either.
Only if you get it cheap and hunt achievements. Otherwise try some free jigsaw puzzle games on the internet instead! If the controls are ever fixed, you can get it, and the developer still actively patches the game. So please compare this to the actual version (this review was written on 1 September 2014).