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Game Review: 2048

Gabriele Cirulli's 2048 is an enticing but frustrating experience. V. S. Wells reviews

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Platform: Web browser, mobile
Release Date: N/A
Developer: Gabriele Cirulli

I hated Gabriele Cirulli the moment I found out he was 19. I hated him even more after I spent several frustrating hours mashing the up, down, left and right arrows on my keyboard in a vain attempt to reach the eponymous 2048. While I am wasting my life trying to win fiendishly difficult games, my fellow 1994 brethren is the one programming them.

2048 is based around a devilishly simple concept: using the arrow keys, you slide pieces around a 4x4 grid. Every movement sends the tiles as far as they will go in a given direction, and then a 2 - or sometimes a 4 - will randomly spawn on the board. Sliding two of the same number into each other gives you the next power of two: so, two 4s combine into an 8, and two 16s give you 32. 2048, can therefore only be achieved through forcing identical 1024 squares to bump in the same place, at the same time. The tiles change colour as their value increases, and for added aesthetic appeal the very high-value ones emit a glow around them.

Besides this, there is also a "score" which increases every time you combine tiles by the value of the new tile created. However, it only tracks total aggregates; a game which gets to 512, or even 1024, in a few beautifully elegant moves, will give you a lower score than a long slog through merging 8s left, right and centre.

A cursory glance around the internet reveals I'm not the only person struggling. Yahoo! Finance uploaded a guide to it, which makes me worry for the productivity of any businessman who reads Yahoo! Finance. There are bots to hack it, and hints on how to achieve victory, but they rather take the fun away from it. Trying to 'play to win' infuriated and saddened me, while randomly flinging tiles into each other with a sort of reckless glee proved far more amusing.

Like any web browser game, 2048 is not meant to be played extensively or seriously. It is casual internet gaming at its finest: elegant, thought-provoking and addictive. After all, what other game would I discover through a friend posting ecstatically on another friend's Facebook wall, smugly announcing his victory over two to the power of eleven?

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areuj Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

Great game, and there is a doge version of it already


Petros Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

Here is the Excel version of 2048:

Play off-line.

Every move is logged with a screenshot capture and stored sequentially in a worksheet for potential game analysis.

Game can be saved and resumed later (just save workbook).


Kimb Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

And check out this halloween & simpson ver happy playtime :)


yirmin Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

The problem with the game is the random nature of the new block. Because it may be a 2 or may be a 4 and could pop up into any unoccupied square the game is less of a puzzle and more of a random chance game. For that reason it isn't that addictive. If it were a puzzle you could develop a strategy that would always allow you to win, but with the random nature the best strategy in the world could give a poorer result than someone simply randomly moving because of the random nature of the game.


Costal Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

ahA ! Allow me to disagree : the random spawning prevent any "easy" and thus once discovered boring solutions. There is an effective way to reach at least 2048, nearly every time. I wont give it all away, for it'll take the fun out of it, but I give you one word : Solitaire.
Good gaming.


Joni Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

A great version for chrome


eli.crestar Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

I totally love this game. :D next I would recommend you to try this. (iPhone here - )


jax Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

fix your google play link :)


playhereplaynow Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

here is a circular version of 2048


Masha Posted on Friday 18 Sep 2020

I am a student and I was so inspired by 2048 so I have written my own girls edition of this game for Windows Desktop operating systems. My version has fields 4x4, 8x8, 16x16, automatic game savings, anti-cheat and anti-boss protection, and very pleasant look-n-feel. You can compete with your friends by playing 2048 Girls Choice and proving your scores due to anti-cheat protection. Welcome to download:
P.S. It's open source game, of course.


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