Game Title: Alchemists: Lab Equipment
Genre: Board game companion
Alchemists: Lab Equipment is a required app for the board game Alchemist. It is essentially a randomizer for setting up the game, hiding the effects of combined ingredients that players are trying to discover throughout the game. It offers the possibility to share one device among all the players or to generate a code that everyone can use to set their device too. It helps with different elements of the game, primarily giving the results of combined ingredients that are either selected from the touch screen or scanned with the camera.
There are some sound effects, but no audio or music to accompany and enhance the gameplay. Buttons and images are clear and fit into the theme of the game. But, there is a lack of any animation or effect when combining indigents that would enhance the overall experience. There are also settings that support a dozen languages. The help button links to a webpage with additional information on using the app.
There are some missed opportunities here. From the lack of atmosphere building audio to an in-app local help information. However, the biggest might be that since the core aspect of the game play revolves around making and tracking your deductions, the app would have been a good place to track those when each player is using their device. This feels like the bare minimum to make the app functional with the game, where it could have also been used to make it move immersive and alive.
Czech Games Edition. (2016). Alchemists: Lab Equipment (version 2.0.3) [iOS].