May 22, 2013
I love grappling hook games. I rarely buy apps right upon seeing them, because, well – I see so many apps. So I saw RopeBot Pro and bought it right away. That’s how interested I was in the premise.
The game takes the structure of a physics puzzler a la Cut the Rope where getting from point A to point B is the goal, with three stars to collect along the way. But in this case, players don’t necessarily cut ropes, but launch them in order to swing about the various levels. Players have direct control over RopeBot, in that they can swing it left and right to gather momentum, as well as to grapple on to surfaces by tapping on them. RopeBot can grapple to two different points at once, which allows for greater stability when navigating, but grappling to a single point allows for speed pickup and is required for navigation.
The problem is that because attaching and detaching ropes requires tapping on the screen to fire at that spot, doing them in a twitch-reaction way proves to be a real challenge. Play this on a tablet if possible. As well, the system prevents the best part of a grappling mechanic from coming to life: that feeling of momentum when swinging from one point to another. It is largely lacking in this game.
However, the greatness of the mechanic does come through: there’s the satisfaction of pulling off the perfect swinging through a tricky section. There’s the euphoria of going into freefall, pulling it off perfectly to land right on the goal. This game is more about the set pieces rather than the fast-paced action of some other games, so while some of my favorite parts of grappling may not exist here, it gets a lot of the other great elements down. Plus, it’s a game with grappling in it. As long as it isn’t completely terrible, I’m probably going to love it.
So, in the name of spreading the gospel of grappling, I do recommend RopeBot. While it’s not the grappling game we deserve, it’s the one we need. Because there are nowhere near enough grappling hook games!