Shooting Blocks is one of the free games available for download at Adore Games. It's a cursor-based puzzler where each level consists of a tower of differently-shaped glass blocks. The goal is to shoot (click on) the clear blocks, while saving at least some (preferably all) of the heart-filled blocks. You get points for destroying the clear blocks and lose them for destroying heart-filled blocks.
This sounds too easy, right? Well, there's a twist. These towers include both types of blocks, sometimes in a precarious arrangement, and are set on a platform with a sheer drop on either side. Haphazardly firing away will result in many of the blocks of the plummeting tower falling off the side of the platform and being destroyed.
The game is easy to learn, but difficult to master. It combines elements of Jenga with building demolition. The goal is to bring down your tower in as gentle and controlled a a way as possible, so your precious hearts don't go skittering over the precipice. You may be able to make it easy on yourself by shooting out a strategic heart block, but if you're like me, you'll feel compelled to replay a level over and over, until you get a perfect score, completion without losing a single heart block.
There are a couple of weaknesses. The menu system seems to be broken. In entering a player name, I tried deleting the default "Player", typing in my own way. But I couldn't get the game to accept my four-letter name. Hitting enter didn't work, clicking on the little check mark didn't work. I simply couldn't figure it out. I ended up having to stick with just the single account, with the name of "Player".
When continuing, you can check the three level packs and see which of the levels you have previously gotten a star on (perfect score), and yet you cannot select previously cleared levels to improve your score, or just play for fun.
I've also experienced some lag when too many blocks start to fall at once. These issues make me wonder if my laptop is having trouble handling the game, and yet it's new enough that it should have plenty of power.
These flaws mar a puzzler which pretty much does everything else right. I hope they'll be improved in a future update (or suggest different system requirements, if such is the case). The game can be downloaded here.
Shooting Blocks is not rated by the ESRB.