Becoming a mobile game phenomenon isn’t an easy task at all, but through all the saturation of games trying to hit it big, Cut the Rope captivated the masses by offering rewarding challenges wrapped up in an adorable package. The game has been out for nearly three years, now, and it’s been on more devices than can probably be counted on both hands, so it’s a little odd to see such a game hit the 3DS, at this point, but it’s still a good game – just not as polished as other versions.
The simple nature of Cut the Rope is what helped garner its original popularity: a piece of candy is dangling from a series of ropes, and it must be cut down to fall into the mouth of the game’s cute mascot, named “Om Nom.”
Within each stage is three stars, which can be collected by hitting them with the candy. Any level can be completed without getting any stars, but this comes at the cost of a lower score and limits what levels can be unlocked. The game does a great job at making you want all three stars – no matter what. Cut the Rope will start off with being fairly easy to collect every star, then progressively gets harder to collect any stars at all. This creates the ingrained idea that if three stars aren’t collected, you feel like you’ve failed, even if the level was technically beaten. This goes on for hundreds of levels, which will take the most skilled and precise player ages to complete, which isn’t typically found in a mobile game.
Almost the entirety of the gameplay from the series is still the same, sans using a stylus instead of your finger (though you can still use your finger, if you choose to do so). The stylus actually gives more accuracy than a swipe of the finger. Since the stylus is obviously thinner, it’s much easier to actually see what is going on when playing, and makes precise cuts much easier to perform and time.
Cut the Rope on 3DS takes a noticeable hit in visuals when compared to its offerings on iOS and Android. The 2D textures are far less sharp, while the colors are dull and flat. It lacks the visual pop that is seen on other mobile devices which helped express its lovely visual style.
With the addition of the top 3D screen on the 3DS, it’s puzzling that it was only used for a simple 3D animation of Om Nom, especially when solving the puzzles involves looking at the bottom screen almost exclusively, rendering the top screen virtually useless. While it’s cute to see Om Nom in 3D, the game quickly changes screens after completing a level, so even if you wanted to see him, you’d have to dart your eyes fairly quickly to see. It’s a shame the top screen wasn’t put to better use, because it just seems like a waste. Since the game is nine dollars more expensive than its previous versions, the simple addition of a 3D Om Nom does little to convince the investment is worthwhile. Even projecting a replicated 3D version of each level would have been a more logical choice and may have helped sell the higher cost.
Cut the Rope for the 3DS is still the same addictive game that launched over three years ago; however, it isn’t as polished as the current version on other mobile devices. For $9.99, it’s a steep price, especially since the superior mobile versions of the game feature stronger visuals and the same amount of content for only 99 cents. If a 3DS is your only device to get Cut the Rope, you can still buy the DSiWare version for $4.99 on the Nintendo eShop with the only significant difference being that the 3DS is held sideways to mimic the narrower screen of mobile devices, and the top screen displays levels and stars gathered.
Ultimately, the cheaper and finer iOS and Android versions compete the game against itself. It makes little sense to spend nine more dollars on an inferior version of the same game, but even at its price point, you’ll still get to experience an addictive, adorable, and lengthy game that has become a massive hit on mobile devices.
This review is based on a review copy of the Nintendo 3DS game Cut the Rope developed and distributed by ZeptoLab.
- Abundance of levels
- Satisfying Challenges
- Questionable price
- Inferior Graphics