Jan 17, 2014
Amoebattle is, perhaps, the first original mobile real-time strategy that can be called that without any stretch. Most of the real-time strategies are either too simple or too flawed, and the ones that are working, are mirror copies of older titles. Amoebattle manages to be neither. And it manages to do so without ridiculous production values.
Amoebattle is a tactical RTS, where events happen on a micro-scale. I’m still not sure about the actual story, but the player controls groups of single-cell organisms that fight against mutated organisms in some sort of micro-world, trying to keep the infection at bay. The setup is really unusual, and the gameplay is on board with it. The player doesn’t have any production plants, and his cellular army is grown from itself. When an organism reaches a certain state, it can divide itself into two exact copies, consuming some of the energy that the player can harvest in various ways. An organism can also mutate into a different one, with different characteristics and attacks. There is a cap at 25 different amoebas that the player can have, so it’s impossible to just crush the enemy with pure numbers â€“ the player needs to try different combinations for his army, and manage the amoebas so that they don’t get killed.
The biggest wonder of Amoebattle is, of course, its controls. I actually still find it hard to believe how comfortable they are. Not only is it easy to understand the control scheme, it also allows the player to micro-manage his army in plenty of ways. The player can choose units one by one, select several of them by circling his finger around them, select units of one type, add or remove units from selection, create up to three quick selection groups, and it’s all without bulky interface. The interface is a work of genius, and is definitely setting the game above many other RTS games present on the platform.
As a final word, I should add that Amoebattle will probably only be interesting to the fans of real-time strategies. It’s not very pretty, although the micro-scale makes for some wonderful and unusual atmoshpere. It’s also very difficult: the fourth mission in the campaign left me frustrated like very few things manage. I actually cursed out loud at the game, so I’m really hoping that the developer will create difficulty modes in the future. That said, it’s an incredible, unusual, and perfectly designed RTS, the likes of which are very rare on Android. I definitely like it.