Game Chest: Solitaire Edition - Review

With Xbox Live on Windows Phone 7, Microsoft is hoping to capture a couple of different gaming markets; the heavy gamer, and the casual gamer. The heavy gamer would be someone who potentially already uses Xbox Live at home with their Xbox 360 console, and games like The Harvest, Need For Speed Undercover, and Assassin’s Creed are games that are targeted to them. The casual gamer is less likely to spend the big bucks on the higher end games, and more likely to buy puzzle or card games such as Game Chest: Solitaire Edition from Microsoft Game Studios.


One thing that makes Game Chest: Solitaire Edition perfect for casual gamers is the fact that the games are familiar, at least if you’ve used the Windows OS recently. Microsoft includes three games in Solitaire Edition; Klondike, Spider Solitaire, and Tri-Peaks. All three games are easy to pick up on and fun to play. Casual gamers will also like the fact that you can play for a few minutes, quit, and then pick up the game where you left off. Xbox Live achievements can be unlocked for everything from winning a single game to gaining level 19 in all three game types.


The graphics are simply outstanding. The cards are colorful, the table surface textures are perfect, and the animations are smooth. The controls are simple as cards can be either dragged or tapped in order to move them where you want them to go. There are also subtle hints throughout all of the games that show you what your possible moves are. Even the game selection screen goes above and beyond; instead of a simple menu, you are presented with a rotating carousel of menu items (there is even an achievement that can be unlocked using only this screen).


Game Chest: Solitaire Edition doesn’t compare with The Harvest or Need For Speed Undercover and it’s not intended to. Xbox Live offers a wide selection of games for all types of gamers. If you’re wanting a game that is easy to pick up on, will entertain you for minutes or hours, and won’t hurt your budget; Game Chest: Solitaire Edition is an easy choice.

Tim Ferrill