Germinator is a new casual puzzle game released on the Playstation Store for the Playstation 3 and Playstation Vita by Creat Studios. The game is based around a common format, bubble popping. This has been done by many games in different forms (many people may remember Beehive Bedlam from Sky games). Germinator does that… however, it does it with, as you may have guessed, GERMS.

The story mode hasn’t got all to much to offer, getting slightly boring as you go through the levels with varying degrees of difficulty trying to get as many combos and points as you can. You must destroy all the black germs to win a level, however, black germs must be destroyed by popping germs of other colours and creating a chain of explosions. Each of the story levels has a timer, a score counter, varying colours of germs and limited powers. The special attack allows your germ to pass through a wall of black germs until it reaches one of its own colour, however, this is disabled on many of the story levels at the beginning.

Where the game gets interesting is when you unlock and begin playing in PUZZLE mode. Limited numbers of shots and specific germ patterns prevent the player from firing germs off in random directions; one must think to be able to complete the various puzzle levels in the game and a degree of intuition will be required in order to progress. Angular shots become normal as you begin to figure out where on the wall to shoot to get your germ to another of its family.

Other modes are available in the game: arcade mode is an endless game, a ‘survive as long as you can’ style gamemode and dual-mode allows you to face off against the computer or a friend over 15 rounds to determine a winner. The game is good at hooking the player and causing addiction, a good excuse to add another twelve trophies to your collection. The game is quite good value for what it offers. It is available at a reasonable price and carries a variety of modes to keep you busy.

The graphic style is nice, everything is quite simple, clean and vivid and does the job well without using anything overly fancy. Controls are both physical and touchscreen (if using the Vita), so, players can take their choice. Sound effects and music are a bit bland and repetitive, but, it’s not really important in a game like this – a lot of people will listen to music or choose for tranquility while playing this game. Overall, it is a great package and is available now in the US on PS3, Vita and in the EU on PS3 with the Vita version coming soon.

(This review was written using the EU PS3 version but also covers the Vita version which is assumed to be similar or identical. If not, this review will be changed upon the release of the Vita version to reflect the differences)