Every now and then you run across a game for your Windows Phone that is simple, entertaining and a great time waster. Metro Pipes looks to be one of those type games.
Metro Pipes is a puzzle game where you rotate pipe sections around to clear a path from Point A to Point B. The game does have two modes, Speed and Puzzle, to keep things from getting stale and game play has its challenge. Metro Pipes does take a little time to get used to the navigation and game play goals. It won't take long to get the hang of things and then Metro Pipes develops a bit of an addictive quality to it.
The main menu offers you options to play either game mode, view the game's settings and access the about and help screens. Metro Pipes does have Scoreloop integration, which you can turn off in the options menu.
Each game mode is a collection of progressively unlocked levels that can be re-played. When you first launch either game mode, you are presented with a tutorial screen that will explain the different aspects of the game. Once you've got a handle on things, hit the back button to begin.
Game play with Metro Pipes is rather simple. You have a collection of pipes that include elbows and straight sections. You tap to rotate the pipes to make connections. Create a series of connections from the entrance and exit points, hit the "clear" button to remove the pipes and collect points. If you connect two entrance points, the pipes begin to buckle and things go boom (which is not good).
Speed Mode on Metro Pipes has your racing rising water to make all the right connections. To make things challenging, you have a variety of pipes that have unique effects. For example, some pipes can only be rotated a limited number of times. Once you reach that limit, the section is locked in place. As you connect the entrance and exit points and clear the pipes, some of the water is drained which gives you more time to solve the remainder of the puzzles. You have to keep the rising water at bay until the water meter runs out (basically a timer) and then you can advance to the next level.
As you clear pipes in the Speed Mode, additional pipes will populate the game board and you earn inventory pipes. Inventory pipes can be exchanged with pipe sections on the game board. The inventory display overlays the water meter.
The Puzzle Mode with Metro Pipes is a series of levels where, again, you have to shift the pipes to connect the entrance and exit points. To complete the level and advance you'll have to clear a set number of pipes that are indicated before you start the level and in the upper right corner of the game screen.
While you may not be racing against rising waters, in Puzzle Mode the pipes won't replenish so you'll have to choose your moves a little more carefully. You may remove too many pipes and prevent additional connections between the two points from being possible. Puzzle Mode is a slower paced option than the Speed Mode but time is still critical in that you will be graded based how quick you clear the set number of pipes.
Game play is challenging, graphics simple and Metro Pipes does make for a decent time waster. But there is room for improvement. While there are help sections that get you pointed in the right direction, I couldn't help but feel these screens needed more information. Maybe a diagram of what's what on each game mode. The other suggestion I would have is to move the water meter position in the Speed mode. It took me a few minutes to figure out where it was and I think moving it to run along the bottom or top of the screen might help with the game screen layout.
Still, while I can find a few nits with Metro Pipes most are more objective and not really detrimental to the game. I found Metro Pipes to be a nice time waster of a game. There is a bit of an addictive quality to the game once you get the hang of game play. Metro Pipes is ad supported but the ads only appear periodically on the game's menus. You get the full screen for game play save the leader boards that line the left side of the screen.
Overall, if you are looking for a challenging puzzle game for your Windows Phone with a bit of an addictive quality, give Metro Pipes a try. Again, it's a free ad-supported game that you can find here at the Windows Phone Marketplace.