Mar 10, 2011

Poker Swap

I've mentioned the old 5 x 5 Poker Solitaire game previously, but here's a recap. You've got a 5 x 5 grid for playing cards, shuffle a deck of cards, and then draw and place one card at a time on the grid. Once the grid is filled you get points based on the poker hands you were able to form. I used to play it on vacation in Canada when I was a teen and it was a good time killer. My only two complaints with the game were that it would be nice to know the maximum score I could have achieved after playing and, of course, the blind luck aspect of the game.

Poker Swap takes that formula, eliminates the blind luck, and adds the pressure of a timer. In it you have a prefilled 5 x 5 grid of cards and a minute and a half with which to move (or swap) those cards around to maximize the point value of the grid. It's actually a pretty clever change to the classic original that adds some needed pressure to the game.

The graphics and sound in Poker Swap as really very well done for a card game. The game feels quite polished. The controls are simple and rely exclusively on the touch screen. Hold down on a card and drag it to a new location in order to swap the two cards.

qrcodeIf that were it then the game might grow tired, but the game also adds a variety of more advanced modes and cards. One of the modes is a Zen mode in which the timer is taken away so that you can ponder your decisions to your heart's delight. The game also offers a variety of special cards that do this such as multiply the scoring on a row, make it so that a given card cannot be moved, and the dreaded mystery card. The one thing that I wish was here was an option to get a new card in the case of a junk card perhaps in exchange for some time.

All in all, Poker Swap is a winner of a card game and makes for another solid addition to one's game library. The game is available in both Lite (ad supported) and Pro formats. 4.5/5 stars.

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