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Unwrapping Folds: what's inside?

Lining up different shaped triangles of blue and yellow in Folds

Folds is a triangular tile puzzle game where you select a tile and try to line it up with another tile of the same color, but the opposite shape. Together they make a square where you can then fold one of the tiles over to create a shape that will match another tile. Players can choose from six different yarn characters to play as and compete with friends and family on the same device to get the highest score for their character. Folds is compatible with iOS devices running iOS 6.1 or later.

After players choose a character to use, they see a grey board with triangular tiles on them, two tiles will be next to each other forming a square at a random spot on the board. This is to help players understand how the game works. Your goal is to create these squares and fold one triangle over the other in one direction to reduce it to one triangle. For example, you see a green square made up of two triangles, there is a lone triangle elsewhere on the board that takes up the top left corner of a square, your goal would be to take the top left corner of the square with the two triangles and fold it down toward the bottom right corner to make a bottom right corner triangle which will match with the lone triangle.

The levels become increasingly harder the further you get into the game. You will have to keep track of the shape of the triangles needing matches, the color of those triangles, and where to move each triangle to make it into the square. If you mess up and make the last two triangles of the same color the same shape, like two yellow top left corner triangles, the game will end. This makes the game incredibly difficult when you are determined to beat your high score and even more difficult when you play by yourself.

Two triangles make up a yellow square in Folds

Playing with other people in a turn based fashion on the same device is an interesting idea, but it might be more fun to be able to compete against others on your own time without having to be in the same room at the same time as the other players. Perhaps some online capability or even game center integration would help keep the game from being too hard and enhance the usage of the cute yarn characters, as playing with other people is a main feature in the game.

Folds is hard for new players to get into. It can be a bit confusing how the triangle tiles move and how to win. Once you get past a few levels, the controls become very simple and it is easier to get past the first 5 levels. After about level 12, however, things start to feel a bit repetitive and mentally exhausting to continue, especially if you have trouble in the earlier levels.

The gameplay feels addictive but the longer you play Folds, the harder it is to get through. You are having to constantly be keeping in mind how the triangles fold. You'll be avoid having the last two of the same colored tiles being the same shape, while also trying to pair up different colored tiles with different shapes. The levels also tend to get longer as there are more tiles to fit into place.

Folds tutorial screen showing crayon drawn triangle art style

Folds features a really nice tutorial which explains the gameplay for beginners, but this style of gameplay really requires some hands on training to fully understand how it all works. The tutorial also uses a different art style from what you see in the actual game. This is a little weird as the art style in the tutorial fit really well with the yarn characters. There is also no clear indication of how to restart the game when you get a game over, which is not explained in the tutorial. This increases the amount of frustration players experience when they fail to fold the tiles correctly.

Folds is an extremely difficult game and while the gameplay idea of triangular tiles is interesting, it could use some other features like game center or an online mode to make Folds more enjoyable. Folds is US$1.99 on the App Store and I would not recommend it.

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