Triangles are your friend in this bridge construction game where your task is to construct a bridge for vehicles to safely cross, but it gets taken to a whole new (weight) dimension in the recent DLC – Bridge Constructor Trains: The choo choo things*.
Bridge Constructor, a game released back in 2013 on Windows and Mac, and later for IOS and Android, is a title all about constructing bridges, bridges that are secure enough to withstand the weight of two cars, two trucks, and at harder challenges even a tank truck.
Armed with three materials and a budget to adhere too, it’s up to you to create a bridge safe enough for transport. Failure to do so will result in a bridge breaking down from gravity, instability, and/or poor construction work. It’s a physics game, meaning should the struts falter you’ll see the supporting beams smash into one another; you’ll see the cables that weren’t correctly connected push the bridge down, and you’ll know exactly what shortcut you took, or error you made to cause the whole thing to collapse in on itself.
Bridge Constructor is a fun little game, and it’s hoping to bring some more fun by introducing TRAINS as DLC to celebrate its 4th birthday. TRAINS brings 3 new islands that bring a total of 18 new levels to add onto the base game’s previous 64 levels, new scenery, and two types of trains that -of course- wish to cross your bridge.
So, with not much changing other than the introduction of train tracks, this game keeps its puzzling and bizarre bridge construction tactics going strong. You get a higher budget mostly because train tracks are quite costly, and just like the base game the budget given won’t be enough to cover a full, wonderful looking bridge meaning you’ll have to use your creativity to create weird, surreal bridges that are structurally sound but also obtuse messes. This may be a bit of a pain for people -such as myself- who like to keep things orderly.
Each level results in me wanting to create a bridge for my trains, while keeping everything perfectly symmetrical and aligned. This, of course, isn’t how it plays out though as Bridge Constructor knows that this would simply be too easy, so instead you’ll be creating bridges with acute angles on one side, and giant obtuse angles the other.
The game is almost entirely mouse controlled – with it swapped for touch screen on appropriate devices. When starting to place your bridge, you have big white dots that signify the starting anchor points, although as the game goes on these can change colour depending on what materials can be used – E.G Yellow for concrete. Of course, as you’d hope with a game focused on physics, you don’t need to strictly adhere to these guides – there are two different display modes, one which layers a grid over the level, giving easy snap options; and the second which allows you to place your components precisely where you wish.
It would be fantastic if we could get a hints menu, but sadly even the base game is missing this feature. While certainly not essential to the game it could help ot remind you which of the materials do what – and how best to place them. I found myself struggling to figure out the cables material, in the end I gave up and just made wooden structures.
After figuring it out again though, I was on a roll!
The music in Bridge Constructor sadly isn’t memorable. It’s there, you can hear it, but it doesn’t seem to have a beat that will capture your interest throughout, I found myself subconsciously blocking it out because it, in a way, just got in the way of focusing on building a bridge.
The graphics aren’t incredibly realistic, and they don’t make you scream, “THAT ROCK LOOKS JUST LIKE A REAL ROCK!” but it does contain some realism amongst it’s cute, gentle, graphics. It’s nice to look at, it’s aesthetically pleasing. The only thing I complain about it the speed of the “realtime” playback, a feature where you hit a play button, and get a live playback of the vehicles travelling over the bridge. The game feels like it’s running in slow motion however during this feature, and the falling physics seem to be affected by lack of gravity, making them float gently to the ground, rather than just dropping in relation to their weight.
It is a great addition to the base game, however my issues lie with mostly what is in the base game. The DLC alone is fun, it’ll please those train fanatics, but the extra weight makes those bridges even harder to construct. It would have been nice to have seen a different material added, or something more than just a new vehicle. If you like your trains though, and you want to help those trains get to the other side of a ditch, and if you enjoyed the base game, then this is perfect for you.