Thursday, December 9, 2010

App O' The Mornin': Aces Cribbage Review

Grade: B
Price: $1 (lite version available)

Aces Cribbage may well wind up replacing Cribbage King as my iOS Cribbage game of choice. So far, I'm really liking the look and layout, and the feature set has almost everything I could want.

I've already written about Cribbage, so I won't rehash all the details of the game. Short version: two people play cards for points which are tracked with a distinctive board-and-peg system. If you haven't yet taken the Cribbage plunge, do so immediately by trying the free Aces Cribbage Limited Edition.

Aces brings a fresh style to the party. It has a much better layout than Cribbage King, filling the entire screen with a handsome board, running point system, cards in play, and cards in hand, with the crib and cut card off to one side. Some might find it a bit crowded, but after the small board and large expanse of blank space in Cribbage King, I'm kind of liking it.

I consider manual scoring features to be mandatory in any Cribbage game, and Aces has a pretty efficient one that makes it possible to play with an optional muggins rule. There is a "slow count," in which you choose the different cards and their scoring category (15s, pairs, runs, etc), or a "fast count," in which you just add up your total score. The game never seems to miss a muggins, but that's okay. I did have a weird muggins error once, with the game taking 1 point when it should have taken 2, but otherwise I haven't encountered any persistent errors. Naturally, there's an option to bypass this and just let the game count all the hands to speed things along.

There are plenty of customization features, including various table, board, and peg styles; three difficulty levels; statistics; and Game Center support. It is, however, missing a couple of features I'd like to see, such as multiplayer support (even pass-and-play would be welcome) and variable card counts (5 and 7 card Cribbage variants are rare, but they do exist). Those reservations aside, I'd count this as my new favorite Cribbage app.


Concrete Software said...

Hello Thomas, thanks for the great review! We are glad you enjoy the new Aces Cribbage. Also appreciate the feedback, hopefully we can try and get those suggestions in a future update.

Best Regards,
Concrete Software

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