Android Quick Free Game Reviews for September 2010: flying, droid, bearzooka, and beachhead
Labor Day Game Madness!
What's labor day for if not some games for your Android phone? Here are four free games that you really should try! And yes, they are ALL free!
Battle Bears (beta)
Ever play a 3D "turret shooter"? You probably did, but you know it as "Beachhead" or Beachhead 2000. If you know that game, this is the Android version, except you are shooting all the cute creatures... Usually pink bears, but there are other bears as well.
Any way... You're stuck behind enemy lines, and the pink bears want to hug you to death, so you have to shoot them before they get to you. You can't move until you eliminate one whole wave, but you can rotate a bit. You start with a gun (technically it's a crossbow), but later you get the bear-zooka, and the flamethrower, and maybe other goodies.
Simple, right? Not when the enemy just kamikazes straight in, and there's a LOT of them... Can be pretty exciting... Where's the enemy? Where?!
Call it 8 out of 10
Pros: 3D shooter! Yeah! No blood and gore, kinda anti-cute
Cons: you'll get bored after a while
EDIT: Beta has expired and has been replaced with the full version, which is only 99 cents. You will need a hefty phone to run this. Older phones should not be used.
Shark or Die (free)
You are a man-eating shark, and you're out to chomp on some swimmers, divers, surfers, and more! The more blood in the water, the more people will swim, but also more likely someone will dive in try to save others, while others head for safety of the boat. How many can you chomp before you die of hunger?
The game is basically a 2D version of, well... tag. Click on a spot to have the shark swim there and chomp on anything in its way. As the swimmers, divers, and whatnot will move, you have to, well, track them, and they will head for the boat once you've been spotted. On the other hand, circling the boat can prove to be very productive.
Between levels, you get "achievements" (chomped on some VIPs, chomped X surfers, etc.) as well as some enhancement points that can improve your swim speed, your turning radius, and so on, giving it a bit more of an RPG feel.
One of the best freebies around, I'd say.
Rating: 9 out of 10
Pros: easy to learn, fun anti-hero, lots of screams
Cons: lots of screams, difficulty really ramps up later, bonuses not explained well
Gravity Tow (free)
You are a little ship that needs to get as far "up" as possible, and you have no propulsion. You can only use your tractor beam to grab onto one of the various green satellites to pull you along. However, you don't want to crash INTO the satellites, so release the tractor before you two meet. Proceed "up" the map as far as you can successively pulling on more satellites. Remember, you WILL fall if you fail to maintain forward momentum, and if you slide back, you are TOAST!
Game, in practice, is basically pick a target that's not too far, but not too close so you can't release the beam in time, and try to pull and sling your ship "forward" one at a time. When the ship is moving at a brisk pace you either can't release the beam fast enough or you can't find the right target fast enough to continue the slingshot effect. It can be a VERY frustrating game.
Furthermore, it has a few bugs. If you turn the screen sideways the highscore resets. And you can't turn off the sound. ARGH!
All in all, really needs a LOT of tweaking for make the game playable. Fun concept, problematic execution.
Rating: 4 out of 10
Pros: innovative idea
Cons: too fast, really stupid backstory, bugs, other issues
My Paper Airplane 2
My paper airplane is back in a sequel, where you fly a paper airplane around an urban landscape, hitting "stars" along the way. No more circling and boosting along the level... It's straight and up/down/left/right maneuvering and higher speed. The lite version has only 1 course, but the full version has four more (total of 5) with distinctive looks.
Controls are quite responsive on Moto Droid but it's hard to judge perspective for the precision parts. There are various "medals" you can qualify for if you get a certain score (usually by achieving "combos", i.e. not miss any stars).
Non-violent precision flying game that's in full 3D...
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: faster, better graphics, no longer any of that circling for stars
Cons: feels like flying through a tunnel...
Recommendation and Conclusion
Three games to try this time! Battle Bears, Shark or Die, AND My Paper Airplane 2 are all worth a try. Gravity Tow needs a little more work.
Stay tuned for more game reviews!
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