Oh, Stacking. If only I could love you more. You seemed so promising, but yet ...
Okay, granted. I only played the demo, available on Xbox Live Arcade. Maybe that was not enough. Maybe I should play further, so I you could reveal more of your depth. But – do you possess it?
The concept of Stacking sounds brilliant at first. You are a little russian doll, a matryoshka. You are very small, just a child, so you can't do much else. But you can stack into other dolls. And while being in those dolls, you can control them. And, most importantly, use their specific abilities. This is the key point of the game. Every doll has a specific ability. Some drink tea. Some pass gas. Some shout. Some shake their booty. These are the tools you can use to solve puzzles.
The problem is ... it feels more like searching for the right key for your front door at 4 in the morning while drunk and without any light. There is exactly one key that will work. And it is somewhere in a flurry of other keys. This is how I felt when playing Stacking. Since you only know a doll's ability when having stacked into it, you spend most of your time stacking into other dolls, activating its ability and pondering its usefulness. The fact that you cannot just stack into any other doll, but only dolls of a specific size relative to your own does not help matters.
The designers tried to mitigate that fact by allowing several solutions for each riddle. It aspires to be like Scriblenauts, but falls short, because it is just not as free-form – the solutions are all pre-scripted.