This review originally appeared within iLounge’s iOS Gems series within the compilation article, iPhone Gems: Every Solitaire Game, Reviewed. Additional details may be found in the original article.
Another of the actually impressive titles in this collection is Solitaire City™ ($10) by Digital Smoke, though what’s good here is more under the hood than on the surface. Unlike most of the other games in this roundup, Solitaire City actually includes an online leaderboard, as well as in-game tracking of your best performances, preventing you from putting scores online unless they’ve been achieved under strict competition timing conditions. As Digital Smoke realized that online score tracking can consume a lot of data when you’re on the cellular network, the online leaderboard is now opt-in; in other words, it can be turned on or off.
In Office Space parlance, Solitaire City has just enough visual flair to meet our threshold for doing more than the bare minimum. The game has a nice particle effect system for glossing up the card piles, as well as seven backgrounds and three similar but slightly different card sets, a number that has increased from the original release. There’s no music, but there are card sound effects, and some nice dragging and dealing animations to keep the game interesting.
Other little touches are also nice. You get 13 popular Solitaire games to choose from, each with multiple rule options; all are presented vertically or horizontally. While Digital Smoke’s menuing and option selection interfaces could use a little bit of streamlining, the number of options is certainly appreciated. Solitaire City also offers a tutorial before any game you haven’t played before.
If there’s anything that keeps this title from being an absolute top option, it’s the high price, which at this point has us expecting more games, simpler options, and a bit more glitz. But our feeling is that Digital Smoke’s road to improving this game’s appeal is more straightforward than many of its competitors: drop the price or add a lot more content within the current engine. As-is, it’s worthy of our general recommendation. iLounge Rating: B.
Company and Price
Company: Digital Smoke
Title: Solitaire City™
Compatible: iPhones, iPod touches