Essentially Mr. Tickle: The Game – or Plastic Man, if you prefer – this physics-based puzzler involves guiding a constantly extending arm around hazard-filled environments in order to grab precariously placed bottles. There’s a paper-thin plot in place, covering the nameless lead character’s life story as they reach out to grab bottles as a baby, teen, adult, and OAP. It’s thirsty work being alive.
On paper alone, Grab the Bottle sounds like something that would be more at home on Google Play or the App Store rather than on a console. We even feared the simplistic premise may fail to keep us engaged. Thankfully, it isn’t long until a few curveballs start being thrown your way, revealing a puzzler with a deceptive streak. Each puzzle is suitably different from the last, with new ideas and playthings frequently introduced.
From the very start, precise controls are called for. Only three mistakes are allowed, each hit prompting the elastic appendage to recoil in pain. There’s plenty of room to twist and turn in the opening stages, but it isn’t long until narrow pathways are introduced, requiring gentle manipulation of the analogue stick. Comparisons with the cult classic Kuru Kuru Kururin aren’t entirely invalid.
Colliding with your own arm constitutes as a hit, so it’s essential to plan routes in advance. There is a way to rewind, however. When grabbing an object, the screen-filling arm recoils; a mechanic used countless times in puzzle solving, reaching out to grab a knife, hammer, or similar and then recoiling to the location where it’s required. T
There are see-saws to tilt, ropes to cut, and sandcastles to smash. Doors should always be opened with caution, as they may block a route. A push of a button is all it takes to start a puzzle anew, and as such, there’s no real punishment for failure.