The Doctor Who TV series has been a monumental success since it began in 1963. In fact it’s listed as the longest running science fiction series of all time in the Guinness Book of World Records. Small wonder then, that with current incarnation Matt Smith working the Dr Who faithful like a bunch of finger puppets, the BBC has seen its way clear to launch an Android app. And an iPhone app. But mainly an Android app.
The app kicks off with the Doctor and his unfeasibly attractive (though naturally less so in the pixels) sidekick Amy Pond boarding racing through time to save an innocent family that has been attacked by a rogue Dalek.
You can control both Amy and the Doctor via an on-screen d-pad, although you can only do so one at a time (switching between characters by tapping the top right of the screen). The Doctor, being a male (humanoid alien) has more strength than Amy, so is useful for moving heavy objects but by and large either character can be used to solve each level’s puzzle. These generally involve standing on a pressure pad while one character bypasses a barrier and then fights their way through the rest of the level. Alongside these non-sentient pitfalls come familiar obstacles like the Daleks and Cybermen.
The problem is that the action rarely progress beyond the ‘mild threat of violence from a nearby enemy that can be easily side-stepped’ into the genuinely menacing. It’s basically a simple puzzle game with a number of objects you must avoid/things you must interact with on each level, so while it’s undoubtedly a very neat educational tool to aid kids’ problem-solving skills, it’s not exactly going to run the COD franchise close for balls-to-the-wall action either.
It’s worth mentioning before we sign off that the Android version of Mazes of Time is free, but you will have to pay to grab the downloadable level packs, featuring new puzzles and monsters.
The Bottom Line
If you’re a die-hard Doctor Who fan, then by all means immerse yourself in The Mazes of Time. If you’re not, there are a lot of other games out there that may well tempt you more.
Version reviewed 1.0.3
Requires Android 2.1 or higher