Frozen Synapse

Yesterday I split a 2-for-1 offer on Frozen Synapse with my friend Steven. Above is one of our first games (which I won - check that one dude doing all the work). A really positive review in Edge made me want to check it out. After seeing I could get 2 copies for £18.99, I picked it up.

The game is pretty interesting. I have a few issues (Mac mouse input isn't great, tutorials could be better, controls and timelines should be much easier to understand), but on the whole, it's a superb little brain-twister. You play in turns, simultaneously planning out your moves and predicting what your opponent might do next. What happens if my friend moves his sniper there? Oh, I get shot. Better try something else. That kinda thing. The amount of bluff-calling and second-guessing makes it play more like poker or Warhammer or chess than a top-down shooter.

Chess is a fitting comparison when you consider how you play Frozen Synapse, too. Because it's a game of turns, you don't need your opponent to be in-game or, hell, even online to play. You simple mark out your next move, confirm your actions and move on to something else. The game will then notify or email you once the opposite side has completed their part. It's brilliant, the best feature by far. It allows you to play a surprisingly complex little game as casually as you'd check Twitter or play sudoku on your lunchbreak.

If I were a reviewing man, I'd give this 4/5

UPDATE: Frozen Synapse is now available for iOS. There are great versions for the iPhone and the iPad.