iPhone App Review: Link Mon

iPhone App Review: Link Mon

March 31st, 2012 by

If you don’t have enough quick-and-easy puzzle games on your device just yet, eefflab’s new puzzler Link Mon may be worthy of a slot on your iPhone’s home screen. Match the monster pairs in order to clear them from the cemetery, but do it fast because there is a time limit for each level. With over 100 board configurations and four modes of play, Link Mon is easy to learn and the games go by quickly. It has a little room for improvement but all in all is a fun game with a simple premise.

How It Works

Each level contains dozens of monsters, arranged in pairs on a grid similar to solitaire Mahjong. To match a pair you simply tap one monster, then tap the matching monster. If an uninterrupted line can be drawn between them (seemingly making only two right-angle turns), then the pair are removed. From time to time you get into some sort of power-up state, where simply touching one monster will automatically clear a matching monster nearby regardless of whether the pair can be joined or not.

You have a limited number of hints that can help you if you get stuck, as well as the potentially more useful Shuffle option that re-arranged the board and hopefully dislodges some matched sets. The game seems to shuffle the board automatically sometimes, perhaps if there are no valid matches available? The challenge definitely ramps up as the board configurations get more complex and feature more solid obstacles to block your matching capabilities.

Pros And Cons

Link Mon is definitely simple to learn and simple to play, which is a very good thing since there is absolutely no explanation in the game itself about how to play. The App Store description isn’t much help either, though the game’s website features some gameplay videos that help explain things.

As for the gameplay itself, luckily I’ve played a game with rules similar to this years ago, so I was able to sort it out fairly quickly. Once you get the hang of the game’s simple rules, it becomes a fast and fun time-killer. As the levels advance the challenge becomes less about finding matches for the monsters, and more about finding them QUICKLY. Time becomes your main enemy, since you have ample hints and shuffles at your disposal to help you clear the board. As early as level 9 I was finding myself running up against the clock to beat a level, which is the mark of a well-timed challenge on the part of the developers. With gameplay this simple you need some sort of time constraint to create a challenge, and the ticking clock works well.

While I liked the music and sound effects, I wish there was an option to turn them off. The music gets tiresome and I would prefer to listen to my own while playing. The game itself has no options or settings at all, and it desperately needs some (turn on/off music, a tutorial, maybe a difficulty setting).


Link Mon is a fun, quirky, and challenging puzzle game that takes very little time to play but offers plenty of challenging levels. Without any instructions it takes some time to learn, but once you sort out the simple rules you’ll be clearing monsters quickly.

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