Published on January 30th, 2012 | by Charlie


Review: Quarrel

Review: Quarrel Charlie

Summary: Charlie takes a look at Quarrel, is it any good? read the review to find out!


User Rating: 0 (0 votes)
Based on the iPhone game, Quarrel comes to Xbox Live Arcade. Personally, I’m no good at word games no matter how hard I try, but since I was playing a word game the day before I found out about Quarrel, I thought: “OK. I’ve had some practice on words. Let’s give this a gander”. Oh and Gander is worth 12 points, did you know that? The proof is in the game, that when you watch somebody else (a friend if you will) play a word game such as this, high scoring words will pop into your head like fish and chips. But then when it’s actually you playing against an opponent, you suddenly think of “Fish and Hips”… understand? While the rules may seem tricky to understand, once you’ve played enough matches of Quarrel, you’ll understand. Let’s say you are playing a two player game, and the aim of the game is to take full control of the board. Each player has an equal number of units on the board spread throughout evenly. Then (depending on the mode) the players are randomly chosen for who goes first. Lets say you go first, meaning you can either move your minions (I’ll call them minions) to your owned territories that are right by you, or you could end your turn just like that, or you could attack. Let’s also say you used a territory that had 5 minions and you attacked your opponents territory which only had 4 minions. You will both battle it out with the same letters in front of you. You need to come up with a high scoring word by using a set of 8 letters in front of you. Each set of 8 letters is also an anagram of some kind, but we’ll get to that letter. Because you would have 5 minions, you could only go as far as a 5 letter word, whilst your opponent can only go as far as a 4 letter word (since he had 4 minions). The one who makes the highest scoring word wins that battle. If you’re attacking, and you win, you take full control of their territory, leaving one man behind to guard your previous territory with your remaining minions invading your opponents. If you lose and your opponent wins, you will lose all but 1 of your minions, who will go back to guard your territory from attack. Plus since you had 5 minions and your opponent had 4 minions, he will take 1 minion prisoner to match that of the number of minions you once had. The same would also work if you had 5 minions and he had 6, and you won. It’s cruel, but fair basically. Trust me, these rules are rather simple once you know them enough. You can always play the tutorial, which will explain everything way better than I just did. Considering the price of the game (400 Microsoft Points), you certainly get a lot to try out. You can play a quick match, which will randomly choose the amount of AI players in the game, and will also choose the map you play on. Domination is a set of 12 maps that you have to conquer. Each map has their own set of AI’s attached to them, and not only do you want to aim to beat the map, but to also play to the best of your ability, where you will be awarded a bronze, silver, or gold status for that map. Then there’s Showdown, where you play enemies one by one to aim for that top spot. The higher up the line you go, the more difficult it gets. You are awarded bronze, silver or gold status depending on how well you played the match. Finally, there is the challenge mode, where there are [at first] a set of 4 challenges:
  • Win at least 5 quarrels in a row against x, x and x (The x’s are of course the names of the AI).
  • Play against x and fight back to claim at least 3 territories.
  • Win at least three colossal conflicts against x and x.
  • Play against x and x and take at least 6 prisoners.
Once you have completed one of these challenges, you unlock a similar challenge to the one you just completed, only with a higher objective (like you have to take at least 10 prisoners instead of 6). You are awarded bronze, silver and gold status depending on how well you complete the objectives. If all that won’t keep you occupied throughout playing the game, I don’t know what will. Oh yes, and there is also multiplayer with up to 4 players. The only problem is the fact that the game doesn’t feel like it offers itself it’s multiplayer as much as other puzzle games do. Quarrel is a very colourful game, and wonderfully structured. What’s nice is it’s child friendly graphics and it’s comical animations, meaning it’s certainly suitable to children. Sort of anyway. The game uses the same dictionary words and score points as of that from the popular board game “Scrabble”. The game uses your Xbox Live avatar, which honestly, I don’t tend to like it when games use that, but in this game, it works. Whilst I may love puzzle games, one of the other problems of a game such as this is that it sometimes requires you to be smart. Every set of 8 letters make up an 8 letter word, and when I’ve always tried to figure out what the word is, I’ve never been able to. It’s not the games fault, but it seems like a game like this is really for the brain boxes (I must admit I did cheat a few times using anagram solvers. I never was good at Countdown). But for those who aren’t as smart as you would like, maybe such a game may get your brain pumping and active. Quarrel is a cheap, but fun game that crams so much into it. With a colourful setting and tonnes of modes to try out, Quarrel is one game you should buy… that is if you have a strong mind for it, which makes me feel that the game may not quite grab everyone.

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About the Author

Some say I should be a video game journalist, others say a video game designer. Shame you can't be both.

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