Review by MZ

"You probably already own it and if you don't, you're not missing much"

We’ve all played Minesweeper; we’ve all had absolutely no clue what to do at first. Whenever someone plays Minesweeper for the first time I often see him or her just clicking on random squares aiming to win. I just stand there shaking my head until I’m reminded that I once did the exact same thing. One of those days a long time ago I had absolutely nothing to do so I took the liberty of learning how to play minesweeper. Well wouldn’t you believe it? In a short 10 seconds I knew what I was doing!

Minesweeper is a very simple game to play if you take the liberty of learning how to play it. You simply click on a square and unless you hit a mine on the first square you click on, that square will display a number. This number displays the amount of mines that may lay in any of the squares touching the square either horizontally, vertically or diagonally. If you hit one of these mines you lose, it’s that simple. Your goal is to reveal every square on the playing board that isn’t a mine. So your looking to find the mines so you can flag them by right clicking on them. Oh joy! Of course, you don’t have to flag them but it will help you track the mines so you don’t happen to, well I don’t know, click on them by accident! Now if you right click on a flagged square, it’ll turn into a question mark square set to symbolize that you don’t know what’s hidden in that square and that you have the brain of an ox to use that useless function. If the square hasn’t been clicked on and doesn’t have a flag on it, you obviously don’t know what it is! Or maybe you do but you’ve just died from boredom, which means you don’t anymore. Then there are the blank squares, which have no mines around them. I applaud the common sense used to make them blank instead of putting 0’s in them because that would just be plain annoying. If you click on one of them all the adjust blank squares will also be revealed until it hits a number so you’ll basically get an outline of numbers.

Minesweeper has four modes of play; Beginner, Intermediate, Expert and Custom. Each difficult mode adds more mines and more squares except for custom. Custom lets you customize the width and height of the playing board. It also lets you set the amount of mines leading to idiots who set the mines to 10 and make a huge playing board. Then they feel extremely proud after beating something that requires less effort than scratching your head. On the other hand though, you can make a custom playing field that is harder than Expert if you need more of a challenge. However I still suggest that you do something else so when you look back at your life, hopefully Minesweeper won’t be a big part of it. Beginner can easily be beaten in less than 30 seconds unless someone replaced your mouse with a brick. The Intermediate and Expert levels of Minesweeper will likely take you over a minute or two unless you’re a skilled professional. Any one who’s a skilled professional at Minesweeper should consider acquiring a hobby. No, Minesweeper does not count as a hobby!

To think, Minesweeper could have some interesting affects but no the designers made it look as plain as possible. The numbers are colored differently; I’ll give it that. The mines are plain looking just like the flags, question marks and squares. All gray squares by the way unless you turn color off, then they become a darker shade of gray. Why would you want Minesweeper to run in black and white? Yes, lets make something look plainer then it already is. When you clear the supposed mine field the face at top looks happy for lack of a better word. Now is there music playing while you click on squares? Or how about explosion sounds when you hit a mine? Well there’s none of that, in fact the only sound you’ll hear is the clicking of your mouse. Of course your mouse clicking doesn’t classify as in game sound. Minesweeper is the pinnacle of simplism as it has no animation, plain and simple graphics and no sound.

Now luckily Minesweeper does include a high score table so you can see how much time of your precious life it took to be the 1337 M1N5SW33P3R C|-|4MPI0N! You’ll probably never play this for longer than 2 minutes a day and if you do I suggest you go pick up a real videogame or boot up one of your old ones. Minesweeper has been around for ages now and they still haven’t even tweaked it a little. Don’t waste your time with it, do something else.

Overall Score: 2


Reviewer's Score: 2/10 | Originally Posted: 04/16/03, Updated 04/18/03


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