High Heels MahJong: In Her Shoes Hands-On Preview

Glu Mobile struts its stuff in this new movie-licensed tile matching game.

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High Heels MahJong: In Her Shoes is not a typical movie-branded mobile game. You don't get to drive sentient automobiles, shoot drug dealers, or search for the Founding Fathers' long-lost treasure. In fact, Glu Mobile has designed High Heels MahJong to appeal specifically to the badly underserved female mobile gamer market. The most action-packed aspect of this game is the fight that Prada and Manolo Blahnik will have over your virtual pocketbook.

In truth, High Heels MahJong doesn't feature any fancy shoe licenses, although Glu was considering the possibility earlier in the development cycle. As suggested by the game's title, this mahjong game is actually based on In Her Shoes, a Fox Pictures movie starring Cameron Diaz that will hit theaters in September. We're not entirely sure what this romantic comedy is about, but it seems likely that it will involve lots of shoe-related activity. Hence, all of the mahjong tiles feature pictures of various high-heeled shoes--some pumps, some sandals, and maybe even a slipper or two.

As in every mahjong game, the idea here is to match tiles and then take them off the board. This produced a pleasing animation in our test build, as well as a little jingle of sound. High Heels MahJong has several retail-themed play modes. There's shopping marathon, which is structured into levels of increasing difficulty; shopping spree, a 10-minute matchfest; and even a shoe closet mode, where you can admire the special shoes you've collected, like a mobile Imelda Marcos. Power-ups abound, too, only they're referred to as "super sales." A "buying frenzy" power-up will wipe off the top layer of tiles, while a "blowout sale" kills an entire column of shoes. The "splurge" basically acts like a nuke, both for the board and for your credit rating.

High Heels MahJong is a cute game all the way around, and it seems likely that it'll appeal to its target demographic. We'll have the full review ready next month, so stay tuned to this gamespace for more information.

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