Most puzzle games nowadays are either overly complicated, or disturbingly unoriginal, copying previous App Store successes. It’s a difficult task, managing to make a game that is simple enough to get the hang of quickly, while not being ridiculously easy, and at the same time, not a copy of an existing game.
Amazing Charlie may not do that perfectly, but it does have all the hallmarks of a fun puzzle game. The game is essentially a “connect the dots” game, with a clown as your main character, and cannons as the points you have to connect. Scattered across the level’s surface are various circus animals that have gotten free. Your task is to shoot the clown from one cannon to another without hitting any of the animals on the way.
You do this by drawing trajectories from one cannon to another. Sounds simple enough, and it is. The controls and game play are easy enough to grasp, and any newcomer will have zero trouble getting the hang of the game. The game adds a bit of difficulty in the form of a timer that is set back every time you land in another cannon. You therefore have only a limited amount of time before needing to figure out the best trajectory to the next cannon.
This adds a small dose of strategy to the game, and manages to keep you on your toes quite a bit. Every few levels, you will be controlling a different clown, with the purpose of actually hitting the animals while flying from cannon to cannon. This helps a bit with the somewhat repetitive nature of the levels (63 in total).
The graphics of the game are cartoonish and bright, which is pretty much what you’d expect from this sort of game. After all, we haven’t seen too many successful dark themed puzzle games on the App Store.