Among free games, Putthole is like the equivalent of a hors d’oeuvre you might find served at a fancy party; it’s good in a refined sort of way. Not very filling – but hey, you got it for free! So you can’t even be mad. And, like hors d’oeuvres at a party, lovers of food and good apps alike could do fine just filling up free, well-crafted experiences without much staying power. After all, if you have a lot of them, you don’t notice their individual brevity so much… Just their quality.
Putthole is of a caliber that justifies its place in such a library of free, high-quality games. Among puzzlers it provides a unique experience, though it has parallels to games like Rush Hour and Pipe Mania which also involve placing shapes on a grid to facilitate moving something from point A to point B.
In Putthole’s case you happen to be moving golf balls. They line the edge of the game board, immobile until you use your tiles, (located at the bottom of the screen) to build a clear path to a hole. The balls will then roll along the path, land in the hole, and you’ll be scored on how intricate your path was before each tile involved falls away, leaving only the squares that weren’t involved in moving any balls.
Playing well becomes a combination of building intricate paths and making sure no troublesome squares remain on the board to interfere with your future paths. The game is very chill about ads, and so far I’ve only seen them come up occasionally when I fail a run. Putthole’s presentation is equally laid-back, and what it lacks in visual diversity it makes up for in general attractiveness and the promotion of a relaxing atmosphere.
Ultimately Putthole is just a fun, calming puzzle game that nails a distinct look and feel without being too ambitious. It doesn’t lend itself to long play sessions since there isn’t much varied content beyond its fundamentally good premise, but what is there is enough to keep a puzzle-lover coming back whenever they might desire something light and undemanding