Tennis in the Face Review

Tennis in the Face Review

May 1, 2013

Tennis in the Face is a morality tale about tennis, energy drinks and the curiously-named Pete Pagassi.

In my quest to free society from the debilitating addiction to Explodz that destroyed my promising career as a tennis pro, I used my racquet to defeat hordes of platformed folks with different attributes.

The action was leveled and fast paced; Pagassi was armed with a racquet and balls, had to take out different types of opponents by making use of ricochets to get into tight spaces and to avoid deadening obstacles. To put the ball in play, I simply used a finger to draw a path in a straight line to where I wanted it to head to. Basically, I wanted to take out the caffeinated drones out with point-garnering strikes to the body, with extra bounties paid for head shots. tennis2

At first, dispatching the enemy was quite easy at first; the early levels consisted of clowns spaced out. Basic planning usually one the day, and I was able to get a maximum of knockouts with a minimum of shots. As the game progressed, the difficulty factor increased; different villains brought different restrictions. For example, one set of characters wielded swords and shields, and could only be knocked out when struck from behind. There were some interesting power-ups that added to the fun factor as well

It had the zany type of artwork that appeals to me, the type that is cool without taking itself to seriously. The animations worked with the characterizations, and the slow-motion sequences helped add humor to the gameplay. the platformed visuals were different, and even though I though some glitz could have worked, I still liked the overall look of the game.

It was another one of those games that surprised me. I liked the familiar Angry Birds-like feel of the levels and scoring, but really loved that it still felt creative. And where else can you play with a cat called Pagassi?

Bouncy Mouse Review

Bouncy Mouse Review

Mar 15, 2012

I don’t tend to play video games that are inherently frustrating. As mentioned, I’m usually playing during my commute and I like to keep my blood pressure down during a commute. It’s not that I want an easy, mindless game, more that I don’t want to feel so challenged that I throw my phone out the window. I love a game with balance between a challenge and ease of play, and I’m happy to have found that in Bouncy Mouse.

Bouncy Mouse is the story of mouse vs. cat. The hero mouse is on a quest to reclaim his stolen cheese from a mean cat. The cheese has been scattered along the way and is waiting to be reclaimed as the mouse passes. The cat has claimed the biggest cheese wheel for itself and the mouse must reach him to get it back.

The mouse navigate the board by swinging from point to point by his tail. The swing points are specific spots throughout the playing field and are placed with a specific route in mind. Users get the mouse from spot to spot by twanging him around like a slingshot. If he’s fired off close enough to the next point then his tail will catch it and suspend him there. Cheese is often hovering in the space between two points so the mouse can grab it as he makes his arcs through the air. Once he reaches the end and collided with the cat he has won the level. He does have to avoid bees and falling into water below, so it’s not a completely easy game. As well points are awarded based on what percentage of cheese was collected in each stage, so there is strategy needed too.

This game is adorable. The mouse is cute and cheerful, which I find very cheerful myself. I’ve gotten myself stuck in a few places, but patience helps me work it out, and I love it all the time. I also love that I’m able to move the game board around, to see my next goal and plan a course of action.

I don’t really have any complaints at all. I would recommend it wholeheartedly.

Ounce Bounce Review

Ounce Bounce Review

Mar 8, 2012

With some games it’s not too difficult to guess where the inspiration came from. Others are deliberately random, and that adds to their charm. And some are just sort of inexplicable and are attention-drawing in that way. Ounce Bounce falls into the last category, which is why I tried it out.

Ounce Bounce is the story of a young owl is undertaking flight-training when he accidentally topples backward into a well. The tiny crash-helmeted owl is trapped at the bottom underneath a vast field of strangely suspended debris. Users help him make his way back to the top. In his way are bricks and boards. When crashed into the boards will move slightly, and the bricks will explode for points. It’s an endurance game and Ounce is constantly fighting against gravity, trying to drift up to the top of the well and not falling back down to the bottom. Users help him by swiping their finger up along his path to send him up. Users can rebound him off of boards to gain height, or into bricks to blast a path. The longer Ounce is kept in the air, the higher the score.

It’s a cute game, and the idea is interesting. Crashing into the bricks is quite satisfying, and it’s fun to challenge myself to see how long I can keep Ounce going. But that’s really all I have to say that’s specifically positive.

Truth be told I just didn’t like this game very much. It’s weirdly slow and lackluster, and there is actually very little accuracy when controlling Ounce. He is such a tiny object that swiping across his path only has about a 60% success rate and the lack of control makes it very defeating to play. Ounce himself looks so gloomy and defeated that it makes me wonder why he even wants to leave the well. I gave it a reasonable go but it just didn’t pass the cut.

Abduction! World Attack Review

Abduction! World Attack Review

Sep 17, 2010

Psym Mobile must have been thinking that picking a name like “Abduction! World Attack!” would be a great way to drum up attention for a their game, and it must have worked, because it’s one of the best selling games in the Android market. Unfortunately, an exciting name alone can not cover its weaknesses.

Abduction! World Attack! is a “keep-your-character-jumping-from-one-platform-to-another-using-the-accelerometer” type of game. It’s basically a dead horse genre. Games with the exact same gameplay include the likes of Doodle-Jump, Papi-Jump, Extreme-Droid-Jump, and Hyper-Jump. And that’s just off the top of my head.

Gameplay is as should be expected with this type of game, with few surprises. Tipping your phone to the right and left will control the jumping of your character from platform to platform, as it apparently tries to get to the UFO that’s kidnapped your fellow-farm-animal-friends. Completing each level, aided with power-ups along the way, gives you more platforms and higher jumps. Unlike other platform-jumping games, Abduction! World Attack! has a finish line. Reaching the UFO ends each level, which is a pleasant change from the other games in the genre, which have never-endingly-high levels. Replay value is moderate, with unlockable characters, and gameplay modes. Unfortunately, the gameplay itself grows somewhat tiresome after more than an hour of playing.

Despite all of this, the game is not very large. I played through the entire “adventure” mode in about 25 minutes. “Versus CPU” pits you against a CPU-controlled character in a race to the top. This the graphics are cartoonish, but kind of boring.

This game has cute, cartoonish graphics, but I wasn’t wowed by the visuals. These would have been pretty good a year ago, but have since been passed by games like Hyper Jump. The price is also fairly steep for a game with such a worn-out genre. Charging a little over $2 is a bit much. I have no doubt that Psym is seeing quite a few returns of this game within the 24-hour trial period, because users can not only play through, but grow tired of this game, in a few short hours.