Stripe Physics is free but flawed.
The Mac App Store, still fairly young at time of writing, is home to a lot of ports, both of PC download titles as well as iOS titles. Some are great, but othersâ€¦ Stripe Physics is part of the “others.” A simple physics puzzler, Stripe Physics tasks you with carefully dropping a ball to a platform by removing various geometric shapes by clicking on them. A physics engine makes things fall, collide and move in ways you ought to expect.
The first thing you’ll be doing in Stripe Physics is hitting the mute button. The music is absolutely horrid. Honestly, if developers can’t be bothered to put good music in the game, it should be silent ad allow us to have iTunes on in the background. It’s so awful as to be distracting. The graphics are also very simple, and nothing really special.
The puzzles of Stripe Physics range from incredibly simple to frustrating. The are, for the most part, clever and well-designed. Many of the puzzles require special timing for removing specific pieces to guide your ball down to the platform. Some of the shapes aren’t removable, or move in different ways. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the puzzle design.
Where things fall down is the arbitrary challenge and poor physics. Part of the difficulty of Stripe Physics stems from not being able to remove pieces as you wish. A short timer appears every time you remove something, preventing you from removing anything else. There are enough other physics puzzle games that don’t restrict you like this, using better design to achieve their challenge.
The poor physics in Stripe Physics hinder progress as well. Everything looks like it’s swimming in molasses, and is very floaty. It’s not that things don’t fall where you would expect; it just takes a little longer to get there, and it might be a few inches off. But in a game involving precision, any deviation is troublesome.
Stripe Physics is also short. You can probably blow through the games 16 levels in under an hour if you get stuck a few times. Fortunately, the free price tag dulls the lack of unlockables or replay value.
There’s enough decent stuff on the Mac App Store that even free titles like Stripe Physics aren’t really necessary for you to play. It’s got some good puzzles, but you’ll forget about them in a couple of days.
This review was based on the Mac version of the game.