Geared 2! is a perfect example of what an iPhone game should be: simple, fast and most importantly, fun.
Geared 2! takes the addictive elements found in the first title and expands on the premise by adding new challenges, 60 new levels and prettier graphics.
In the original Geared, the premise was easy and simple: Place mechanical gears on a grid in a way that allows for every gear on screen to spin at once. While that same basic concept carries over to the second, there are some new features that add to the complexity.
If you have never played the original Geared, know this: There is always one yellow spinning gear on one side of the screen. Connecting gears to this yellow gear will cause them to spin. In Geared 2! however, there are new types of gears such as the directional gear. On stages where the directional gear is placed, you will see an arrow indicating which direction the gear is set to. Moving the gears that hold the directional gear in place will cause it to move in the direction indicated. In many stages there will be several of these gears and you will have to dictate which directional gears should move or stay stationary. Directional gears are essentially the replacement for the original game’s switches.
Noticeably changed from the first game are Geared 2!‘s graphics. While the original’s weren’t bad by any means, they were a bit bland and lacked character. Geared 2! has a small hamster in the yellow gear, powering it up and flying out as the stage is complete. This little hamster provides some amusement for otherwise frustrating stages. The graph paper look is also absent and in its place is a more “drawing board” style, with a canvas and a sheet of paper making up the background.
Probably the largest new feature in Geared 2! is the addition of user created levels. At any point in time when playing, you have the option to begin creating your own new levels with a complete toolset to choose from. On top of being able to create these levels, you can also play other user’s levels by downloading them from the internet. With this new mode, there is essentially infinite replay value packed into Geared 2!.
On top of adding these new features, what is most important about Geared 2! is that the focus on being incredibly easy to jump into has not been lost. The controls are easy to pick up, and involve simply tapping on the screen to select which gear you’d like to place, and then dragging where you’d like to place it. Rarely do we see such simplicity packed with so much quality – it’s the sort of combination you’ll find in premier portable titles like Angry Birds and Cut the Rope.
Overall, Geared 2! is a no-brainer for every iPhone gamer. Not only does it pack simplicity, complexity and quality in one package, but also does it beautifully. If the original Geared was the appetizer, Geared 2! is the main course, and probably the dessert too.