This top-down puzzle game starts with a screen featuring a number of red cogs at different parts of the screen, and a grid of pegs (which become less complete on later levels). Your task on each level is to use a number of gears of one of 3 different sizes to ensure that all the pegs are linked together. All this has to be completed before the engine overheats.
Making life harder are two creatures with the peculiar name 'Poffins'. One of these goes around removing pegs, and the other causes the engine to overheat further. They can be shot out of the way, or have gears placed over them to stop them.
There's also a bonus round, which is a fruit machine, only with cogs and other things from the game rather than fruit.
If you like to tinker with puzzle games, then you will definitely want to give Gear Works a turn, so to speak. There is more than enough game play to please even the crankiest puzzle aficionado.
Gear Works challenges you to arrange gears, which come in three different sizes, in such a way as to complete the connection between two or more pre-existing gears. You are connecting the gears to fix one of 12 famous landmarks, such as London's Big Ben or Italy's Leaning Tower of Pisa.
Like other puzzles games before it, or maybe after it, depending on their age, Gear Works displays the next gear to be placed so you can plan at least one move ahead. Lest you think this will be a walk in the park, each floor of a landmark consists of multiple "rooms" that must all be completed before the timer runs out. It doesn't take long for the difficulty to ratchet up.
There are also some little pests roaming around each level, but as there is no documentation on this game, I do not know what they do. They did not seem to interfere during the levels I tried, but that was the easy, early levels.
In addition to placing gears you have some extra tools at your disposal: guns (I think), bombs, and oil. Again, due to documentations, I will have to guess at some of these. The gun seems to be for shooting the pests, but since they didn't hinder my play, I didn't need this. Bombs are for removing any gears placed incorrectly so that you can retry. Finally there is oil that I assume is for oiling the gears, but I do not know in what scenario this is needed.
The game uses the familiar code system to allow continuing the game where you left off; however, a code is only given after completing a landmark, not after completing a "floor." This means you will need to ensure you allot enough time to complete several puzzles during your playing session.
Gear Works may be just another cog in the long line of puzzle games, but there is plenty of fun to be had here, so grab your tool box and get cranking!
Gear Works is a decent puzzle game that may appeal to fans of Incredible Machine series. The objective is to place given different-sized gears on pegs to construct a gear train that continue from the left side of the screen to the right. Since you are given gears at random, often the current gear you have cannot fit into the chain you are building (e.g. it might be either too large or too small). You are therefore forced to place it on some other far away peg. This means that the game becomes difficult quite quickly as the screen becomes filled with unused gears that aren't connected to anything.
Fortunately, you have several tools to help solve the problem, such as bombs to blow up unneeded gears. These tools are limited to only a few per level, though. Overall, Gear Works is a rather neat game, although not very intuitive. The lack of variety also hurts long-term play value, as there are few new pieces and gameplay elements to add variety. It's just gears, gears, and gears all the way. Worth a look for puzzle lovers or anyone interested in invention-building games, although it's nothing special.
How to run this game on modern Windows PC?
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