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  1. Nov 25, 2012
    Zed's Alchemy is another entry in the alchemy type of games, involving combining "elements" -- not in the chemical sense -- to produce new elements, and so on. These games live or die based on two broad elements: comprehensibility of the matches and user interface. ZA does a good job with its element combinations and manages to throw a few interesting curve balls, creating some unique alchemical matches. The creativity of the game maker is very much in evidence throughout the game. Unfortunately, the user interface lags behind. It centers around an inventory list kept in a "back room," from which the player decides which elements to put onto the working surface. Keeping them straight can be a challenge, particularly once the field starts getting crowded, and the touch interface is not always correct, leading to the wrong element "sticking" to your finger. The only way to keep the playfield reasonably organized is to frequently blank the open elements and repopulate from the stockroom list, which arranges the elements into a grid. On the positive side, dead-end elements are clearly marked so that you don't waste time. The only other UI negative is that the hint system is not yet implemented, despite promises, and updates have not been forthcoming. Overall, Zed's Alchemy is an alchemy game with a lot of promise, but it's hamstrung by a clunky user interface and some missing features. It has the potential to be great; it just needs some more work. Expand

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