If you were to put Tetris, Lumines, and arithmetic in a blender, you’d get a wonderful freeware title called Blocksum. Blocksum is the brainchild of three Japanese indie developers known only as Shintaro Sato, Ginger, and Xor. This game has been around since 2006, so it’s a little dated.
Age be damned, Blocksum is crazy fun.
The game works like this: rows of blocks slowly advance toward the top of the screen and move progressively faster as your level increases. If the blocks make it to the top, the sides of the field turn red and initiate a countdown. You’re given seconds to pare down the blocks until the countdown runs out. If it does, the game is over. The blocks disappear when blocks of corresponding number and quantity touch. Connect two of the 2 blocks to make them go away, four of the 4 blocks, and so on.
The “sum” in Blocksum comes from creating blocks of different numbers by adding them together. You can make a number 5 block by combining a 2 and 3 block, or you could combine 4 and 1. Essentially, you’re doing math under heavy duress. To help the player ease the tension, there are silver orbs that will appear from time to time. If you connect a number block to one of these orbs, it will erase all of the blocks with that same number on the field.
Here’s a YouTube video from the site that shows Blocksum in action.
What I love most about Blocksum is its simplicity. It’s the type of game that’s easy to play but hard to master. Blocksum has a strangely addictive quality about it. I’m not big on puzzle games, but I find myself picking it up just to see how well I can do. In addition, the soundtrack to this game is awesome. I don’t know who composed the music, but it’s really good. I played Blocksum on a lunch break at work a few days ago, bobbing my head as I was jamming to the tunes. I probably looked like a fool, but I didn’t care one iota. Blocksum is so much fun that it makes you forget where you are.
Blocksum is totally free, so give it a whirl. You can get it here.