Slitherlink sighted in USA

In shonky Agetec puzzle comp.

Those of you wondering when our old friend Slitherlink is likely to arrive in the West will be alarmed to learn that it sort of already has - having sneaked onto an Agetec/Jaleco puzzle compilation released in the US as "Brain Buster Puzzle Pak" last month.

Irregular readers will be wondering what we're on about. They can click on the review link above, or simply know that Slitherlink's a brilliant logic puzzle and is currently Japanese-only, having achieved true greatness as Vol. 5 in Hudson's Puzzle Series.

This Agetec version - created by Nikoli and Jaleco in Japan, by the look of it - offers 50 Slitherlink puzzles (a bit down on the hundreds in Hudson's) but also includes Kakuro, Light Up, Nurikabe and Sudoku puzzles. It retails for USD 19.99.

Those approaching it specifically for Slitherlink will discover that it's also a bit fiddly and crap. The interface is stylus-only, with game boards nowhere near as bright, intuitive and easy to scan as they are in the Japanese title. In fact, drawing lines, crossing out impossible avenues and the like is torture.

In other words, a cursory examination suggests you'll want to side with the Japanese release, which is completely playable even if your kanji's such that you don't know the difference between "Yes" and "No". As for the rest of the pack - we'll leave that to reviewers. We're just being needlessly harsh and judgemental, and some people seem to like it.

Still, we must offer our thanks to friend-of-Eurogamer Dan Boutros for alerting us to Brain Buster Puzzle Pak. And we must continue to maintain our Slitherlink vigil, ever hopeful that somebody will realise it's brilliant and bring it out here where more people will be enticed to try it.

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