Laser Flee – Retro Spaceship Review

Laser Flee – Retro Spaceship Review

May 12, 2014

Tis the season to go retro… and Laser Flee – Retro Spaceship definitely feels invested in the spirit.

It’s a straightforward affair with several elements that look to reward quick thinking and visual acuity. The graphics are rendered in 2D form, with the craft having to move from left to right to finish the level. The artwork is purposefully simple with non-subtle retro leanings. The entire graphical look comes together just as one would expect in an old school shooter; the animations convey the action, and the game needs few tutorials to understand. The controls are equally as simple: a joystick and a shooting button nestled at the bottom corners of the screen.

The gameplay is mostly defined by the obstacles that make up a major par of the game. as already mentioned, the space1ship starts off from the left of the screen; generally, there are block-like structures that block egress from the left part of the screen to the right, and using the gun through the not-permanent block usually forges a path. Secondarily, to get across the colored gate at the other side, it is necessary to collect a key by contact.

To compound matters, there is a red laser beam that extends from the top to bottom of the playing area that is closing in on the protagonist ship, so the player does not have all day to dilly-dally around; as the game goes on, speed of action definitely becomes a factor, and the placement of the key to the exit gate can cause all sorts of havoc. Another factor is that the ammo is limited; thus, looking for power-ups is crucial. Soon, things like moving blades become present.

All in all, this is another game that proves that fun gaming can be had with a simple, retro skin.

TM Laser Enigma Brings Improvements to the TM Laser Formula

TM Laser Enigma Brings Improvements to the TM Laser Formula

Apr 11, 2012

For whatever reason, I have always had a problem sticking with a mobile game for more than a week or so. It seems like most of the games are receptive and the endless levels are like putting a carrot on an infinitely long stick. Puzzle games are more of my ilk because they present a simple, more cerebral challenge that do not rely on timing or finicky gyroscopic tilting. A while back I reviewed a nice puzzle game called TM.Lazor, and in that review I talked about how with a little touching up this game could really gain some momentum and become very popular because the core gameplay was so solid and challenging.

Well that major update has been released into the wild and I am proud to say that so far there is a marked improvement on both the styling and quality of the puzzles. There certainly is an added “enigma” in this edition’s puzzle complexity and overall cleverness. I found that completing these challenges to be much more satisfying then in the previous iteration. TM Laser Enigma, along with its predecessor, gives that feeling of impossibility when looking at a new challenge, a feeling that is championed only with a sudden realization moments before making the finishing move. This balance of being hard but fair is tough and is not always found in modern mobile games.

TM Laser Enigma makes several other marked improvements in the overall interface and design of the app. There is an option to upgrade the look of the lasers as well as better looking laser pylons and pieces. The whole game has a much more vibrant feel and the colorful lasers really pop due to the darker backdrop. Overall, I am impressed with the update for one of my personal favorite Android games. For everyone who is a fan of puzzle games I highly recommend checking out TM Laser Enigma.

TM.Lazor App Review

TM.Lazor App Review

Jan 4, 2012

Smartphones are the perfect console for our modern ADD gaming culture. Got ten minutes to wait for a bus? Pull our your phone and play a few levels of Angry Birds. It almost happens by instinct now; whenever boredom strikes, the knee-jerk reaction is to reach into your pocket and tug out the smartphone. Unlike the epic, beautiful, and story-driven (supposedly) home console games, mobile gaming has found its niche in multi-leveled games with simple-yet-challenging gameplay. TM.Lazor is a game that fits the mold perfectly and delivers a solid game that will hold your attention for just as long as it needs too.

The premise behind TM.Lazor is to deflect lasers into specified portals by a grid of manipulatable mirror and such. A surprisingly plentiful amount of road blocks and challenges present themselves, and a helpful tutorial mode makes them easier to manage. The gameplay here is clever and the objects in your way do present a challenge and are varied so as levels don’t appear repetitive. You also have about 6 different kinds of mirror and redirecting squares which really means that every level is different because different assortments of these are supplied every level. Another feature that helps ward off repetition is the variation in level sizes. One level you might be in a long hallway and the next you’re in a claustrophobic square.

TM.Lazor does a good job making a game that is challenging without ever seeming cheap. The game’s difficulty curve is very forgiving and it’s easy to breeze through the first map pack but the more difficult maps start to tax your intellect. This game, like many other in its category, is very addictive and if you’re into puzzles this game is definitely worth checking out. What’s more, TM.Lazor is another free hidden gem on the Android Market.

LightUp Review

LightUp Review

May 11, 2011

LightUp is an interesting puzzle game wrapped up in some great looks and cool ideas. However, there are a lot of problems plaguing this game.

Playing with lasers is cool, and in LightUp, you have 48 different ways to play with them. Each level is a puzzle, and the only way to solve each puzzle involves using mirrors, splitters and other pieces to bounce the light into specific targets. As you progress through the game, it becomes increasingly difficult, offering new pieces and cool new tricks to do. If you can solve the puzzle under a par time, you can maximize your score, but you have to be careful, as there are black holes that add time onto the clock each time you hit them.

Every fifth level is an especially tricky level where the emitter is switched off while you place your pieces. When you’re ready, switch on the emitter and hope you have the right solution. Otherwise, the grid clears and you have to start all over again while the clock just keeps running. These were probably the most interesting levels as there was no way to figure them out without also resetting them each time you switched on the emitter.

LightUp features some very nice graphics with eye-catching special effects. It’s reminiscent of Geometry Wars in how colorful and psychedelic it can be. As simple as the game is, sometimes, it just looks awesome. My favorite part of the game, by far, is the soundtrack. It’s epic, sweeping synth-based music that doesn’t just set the mood, it’s good enough that I could actually listen to it outside the game. Great stuff.

Now, for the bad. There’s a number of strikes against this game that mar it in terrible ways. Inaccurate, unresponsive controls, sound effects that sound like they were recorded way too loud and not a lot of replay value. Some of the problems, especially the overdriven sound effects, are so blatantly obvious that I wonder if this game went through any kind of QA process.

To add insult to injury, sometimes, I start up the game and get nothing but a white screen. The app doesn’t crash, but the graphics go completely glitchy and the app needs to be killed before it will work properly again. Also, what’s the deal with the “Exit Yes/No?” pop-up box that doesn’t work at all? When I click the “back” button on my phone, this dialogue box pops-up. Clicking “Yes” just closes the box while the game continues to run.

The real kicker here is that LightUp is still on version 1.0 and hasn’t been updated since May 2010. That’s a long time to go without fixing a number of obvious problems. This game is in a pretty sorry state, and if I were you, I’d avoid it altogether. It could have been a lot more fun, but needs some serious fixing before it’s worth the asking price.