Finger Flashing is based on the very simple principle of yakyuken or paper, rock, scissors. (paper covers rock, rock breaks scissors, scissors cut paper)
It's a puzzle game, but not in the traditional sense of falling blocks, lining up colors or something similar. Instead your character, who always remains at the bottom of the screen walks upwards as the playing field is scrolling towards him or her. You can choose between 2 characters, a cute red hatted witch named Poi, or a boy with a bazooka named Chike.
The screen is divided into 6 lanes. You can only move left or right to switch lanes, but not move up or down the screen. This setup can be compared to Klax, but without the block stacking at the bottom of the screen.
Now for how the game plays. Remember that I said everything revolves around paper, rock, scissors? Well each enemy resembles one of these items.
The blue hands resembles scissors
the red hand resembles paper
and the green gargoyle is the rock
You can fire magic or shells that
also resemble one of these 3 elements:
Each button stands for a different shot. When you shoot a gargoyle with paper, it disappears. When you hit it with scissors there is no result. But when you accidentally hit it with a rock, another gargoyle will appear right in front of it. This principle is the same with the other types of enemies.
The tricky part is that you need to react and defeat the enemies before they reach the bottom of the screen. If you fail, it's game over. In the beginning it's all a bit confusing, since your mind need to become accustomed to reacting immediately to the different kinds of enemies and which button is needed to defeat them. Once this is done it becomes second nature.
In the beginning everything seems simple as you get ready for a calm little puzzle game, but those emotions will soon make way for panic induced button mashing, which no doubt will lead to many game over screens. ^__- The beauty of this game is that it has that "one more go" reaction going for it. Whenever you die, you immediately want to jump back into the game.
You think that was it? Well....not exactly. See, those enemies come in groups. Some small, some quite large. If you shoot a red hand (paper) and next to it, or right behind it is a gargoyle, then a chain reaction will occur, destroying both enemies and creating a combo. See what I'm getting at?
From the point the game stops teaching you the basics, it starts throwing groups of enemies at you that can (mostly) be defeated by shooting a single enemy. If you shoot the wrong one, you break the chain and might have to pick them of one by one. This is where the panic comes in. ^__^ But when you find the right one, you can create big combos which account for mucho points.
You do have a time stopper, well 5 actually. When used it freezes everything for a couple of seconds. Giving you the chance to correct your mistakes.
You can also adjust the speed of the game from 1 to 5 whenever you want with the L1 and R1 buttons. That's what's the gauge on the right of the screen is for. The thing is this counter is connected to your score. When you shoot an enemy when walking at speed 1, you will get a lousy 10 points. That same enemy shot at speed 5 will give you 150 points!
Needless to say, you will try to move at the top speed whenever you feel it's possible, increasing the intensity tenfold.
Besides the normal enemies, there will be evolutions of them which jump up in the air. forcing you to time your shots with precision. Others will morph into blobs, making it difficult to tell which enemies are what. You will also come across obstacles that you will need to avoid at the last second, so you can blast the foes that hide behind them.
In the end, don't expect an epic game. This is a puzzle/shooter game after all. With that said, it doesn't mean that the game won't last long. There are at 10 extremely varied stages, which all have their unique artwork.
You get a Story Mode, a level based Time Trial Mode, a 1, 3 or 5 minute Score Attack Mode and even a Versus Mode.
People looking for an original concept in a puzzle game will find what they are looking for right here. But beware, Finger Flashing becomes very addictive very fast.
Andy De Wilde