Continuing their Pic-a-Pix series, Lightwood Games just launched Pic-a-Pix Classic for the PS4 and Playstation Vita. Available as a cross-buy title, how does it fit in with their previous games in the series?
For those unfamiliar with the Pic-a-Pix name – they’re games based on the nonogram formula, perhaps better known as Picross for those familiar with the games that became so popular on the Nintendo DS. Pic-a-Pix Color is still one of the best puzzle titles on the Vita, with its color twist on the classic formula – where numbers on the sides of a grid indicate how many squares need to be colored in. Do it correctly, and a picture emerges.
Pic-a-Pix Classic is, as the name suggest, a step back in time. It offers 150 puzzles that are similar in approach to Picross DS, with monochrome puzzles that eschew the color coding element that was introduced earlier. It’s one less element to consider, but it doesn’t make the puzzles any easier – without color-coding, it’s harder to get some kind of visual guideline for what fits and what doesn’t. Grid lines and columns also aren’t broken up in multiple colors, making it harder to determine which squares need to stay blank and which don’t.
Despite the change in puzzle dynamic, Pic-a-Pix Classic is still very much a game in the Lightwood series. Its visual style, as well as the presentation of the menu screens and the music, are all very familiar. And even with the new monochrome approach, Classic still uses Lightwood’s familiar bright colors – you’re only getting a black and white image of the completed puzzle at the very end of one.
If you ever played Picross, or any of the countless variations on it, then Pic-a-Pix Classic will be a familiar and welcome sight. If you’re coming from Pic-a-Pix Color, then the ‘simplification’ of the format might take some getting used to. For me personally, I prefer the multi-colored puzzles and their solutions of the Color variety – it just felt more satisfying to me to work on.
That doesn’t mean I don’t recommend Pic-a-Pix Classic by the way. After all, the Vita never got a version of Picross and Pic-a-Pix Color was merely the closest we got, no matter how good it was. Now, although under a different name, Vita players can finally experience “the real thing”. That alone is probably enough of a recommendation for fans.