I've played my share of puzzle games, both delicious and not so. I mean, how many different versions of Tetris can they really make? It's always welcome when a company tries their hand in uncharted puzzle territory. Factory manages to combine a solid formula with a story, of sorts, resulting in a rewarding experience. Lettuce Discus
Factory Panic seems almost like a precursor to Chu Chu Rocket; where instead of aiding mice in their pursuit of horrible freedom, you are stealing from the Man and delivering goods to your fallen, hungry comrades. The opening scene shows the protagonist charging through the enemy ranks to get inside the Factory, of Panic, apparently. When a level begins you are shown what item to deliver to which person. You achieve this by turning switches "on" or "off" in order to change the path the item travels along a series of conveyor belts. Things start simply enough; delivering one kind of item to one kind of person. In later levels you are delivering a specific item to each type of person, hence the panic! What if comrade A gets a Game Gear instead of the Flan-looking stuff he requested? I don't know, and frankly, I'm afraid to find out. It's that intense!
To spice up the difficulty, guards roam the facility to keep the people down and prevent you in your Flan delivery. To continue socking it to the Man, your character can burp (?) At them to temporarily stun them. I find it a little sad that we clearly see the hero pummeling guard after guard in the opening cut scene, but here all he has at his disposal is a burp ability. I personally think it would be more fun to intersperse the puzzle action with the occasional brutal beat-down of a few marauding guards.
The music is your typical "working-in-a-factory" Bubble Bobble/ Snow Brothers kind of music you've heard a million times in video games, but it isn't bad or annoying. Graphically, you pretty much know what to expect from your Game Gear, and the game looks quite nice. If you feel the need to liberate the people of Factory Panic city with the gift of Flan, this game was made for you! Conversely, if you're just looking a solid puzzle game on the go, this shouldn't disappoint.