Hearing the name’ Bridge Constructor’ sadly brought up an automatic assumption that it was another ‘quirky’ simulator with limited scope.Thankfully I was happy to find that Bridge Constructor is less fussy than that. It’s literally about making bridges that work, but importantly, that’s fun to do. It also reminded me of a latter day triumph of musical warmth by Limp Bizkit entitled ‘Build a Bridge’, because it’s chock-full of wise words for bridge construction.
Viewed on a 2D plain, Bridge Constructor’s main aim is for you to create a series of bridges on a certain budget and with limited material choice to accompany it. Seems simple enough, and the early guiding hand the game gives you is definitely an accomplice to that, but the thing about bridges yeah? They need to be juuuust right in order to even facilitate safe passage for a car without turning into hyper-kinetic kindling. So begins an interesting battle of wits where every plank of wood or spool of cable needs to be set well enough to work in balance with the rest. So Bridge Constructor is best described as a physics-based puzzler.
It all begins with simple wood bridges, a little tricky at first, but easy enough that they don’t stump you for long. Following real-world physics as a blueprint is essential for progressing. As rock/rap gentleman, and spearhead of the modern shite goatee movement, Fred Durst once mused, you’ve got to build a bridge to your mind in order to win at Bridge Constructor (I’m sure that’s what he was thinking anyway). You swiftly learn that just planning a whole bunch of erratically-placed support struts just won’t cut it. More likely it will render your structure into a nightmarish exhibition of spiky carnage.
It is amusing, at least for the first few times, to preview your efforts, and watch everything fall apart in an aggressive and comedic fashion. It’s a small respite from the early onset of frustration, and keeps you from throwing in the towel/searching the internet. As with any decent puzzler, failure is an important ingredient. It’s like scourge of the new millennium, and well-meaning baseball cap-aficionado, Fred Durst once said, ‘Even though it’s gonna crumble down, I’ll keep building till I get to the next level’ (or words to that effect).
At its heart, Bridge Constructor is all about chasing the highest possible score for the lowest outlay, a combination that makes for a compelling thrill when it all works out. You can even wager on letting heavier vehicles onto your latest construction in order to gain a better final score. Then there’s the challenge of using as few supplies as possible to keep the overall cost down without crippling the strength of your bridge. Bridge Constructor has a surprising depth in this regard. It may look very simple and clean, but the more creative-minded will eke a great deal of extra enjoyment out of the game than most. Again, I was drawn to the wisdom of Jacksonville’s finest export, and Britney Spears’ career low point, Mr. Frederick Rollin’ Durst when he implored us all to ‘Build a bridge of memories, stretch it out over more hours by experimenting with the physics’. A surly loudmouth Mr. Durst may be, but he sure knows his bridges.
I suppose what I’m trying to say is that Bridge Constructor may appear to be just a simple physics puzzler with very basic, if decent enough, visuals, but there is plenty of enjoyably taxing puzzles with multiple solutions. It’s not particularly thrilling by any means, yet it doesn’t really need to be. As a quaint distraction for Vita, it’s definitely worth a shot if you fancy a bit of bridge-based thinking. I can assure you that if that is what you want, then I refer you to the Florida poetry of the potato-faced man, who sang a song about keeping his kecks on as if it was the most dignified thing he’d ever done. He warbled like a human/seagull hybrid with sinus problems that you should ‘Build a bridge, build a path, overlook the aftermath, and also pick up Bridge Constructor if you like puzzles and bridges. I should know what I’m talking about, I know my shit where bridges are concerned’.