Toybox provides the punchline to “what do shooters and match-3 games have in common?”

There’s plenty of merit to the idea of combining genres. The Puzzle Quest series, for example, cleverly fused role-playing and puzzle elements together, resulting in a hybrid that proved both addicting and original. Barrel of Donkeys’ upcoming game Toybox for iOS is employing the same method, featuring components from both the shooter and “match 3” genres.


Players will be in control of a bullet-firing ship with one thumb, and combining blocks of the same color with the other. These two things will work in tandem, with players earning blocks by shooting enemies, and earning better weapons from stacking blocks appropriately. It starts out slow enough at first, but each round wastes no time building up momentum and challenging the player to think as fast as possible.

The better you master the ability to manage these two elements, the more you’ll be treated to block combos, weapon upgrades and smart bombs. And if you’re on the verge of destruction, a well-placed block has the potential to provide you an extra life. No pressure, though.

Despite this intensity, the game will feature a very charming and colorful appearance. The blocks look not unlike what you’d find in a real toy box, with paint chipping off of them in various areas. It’s the same story with the ships, which look very reminiscent of plastic toys. In other words, it’s cute in a way you’d expect a game titled “Toybox” to be.


An exact release date hasn’t been provided, but Barrel of Donkeys has said that the game will arrive somewhere in the third quarter of this year. We can’t speak for you, of course, but we’re rather excited to see just how well this concept works, even if it does give us painful flashbacks to our parents telling us to put our toys away.