Orborun Review

Orborun Review

Oct 9, 2013

If there is an award for diversity of offerings on Android OS, Bulkypix would definitely be in the running. This publisher house does it all, and mostly does it well. Its latest offering, Orborun, is fun little game that brings running games all the way back.

The graphics set the tone, and in this one, it is all futuristic, with stark, dark hues encircling the right white of the rolling platform. The animations were as sharp as a game of this genre deserves, with utility sequences making up a lot of the collision after-effects. There is a deliberate use of color that translates quite well to mobile gaming.orb1

The gameplay is really, really interesting. I mean, it has to be with a five-part tutorial, that gives an inkling of what is to come. Upon finishing that, a “world” is selected and you get to roll for real. The roller is a robot that converts to a metal ball on the fly; the traveling area is reminiscent of an especially treacherous, elevated bobsled track. The path is windy and non-continuous, with drops and obstacles strewn throughout. The preceding tutorial shows which are to be avoided, and which should be “collected” and it is all lightning fast even before stuff like speed boosts come into play. Future worlds are unlocked by prior success.

Since the developer is intent on messing with the sanity of players, interesting variations start appearing. Think the walls of rolling path are too high (you won’t; trust me)? Well, those bad boys get flatter… so flat that it may feel like guiding a pinball along a tightrope without the benefit of safety rails. It is an exhilarating ride.

There is stuff to collect and maximize points haul, but I didn’t find much to spend it on; mostly robots with special attributes and several skins. And linking social networks gives more freebies as well as dialing up the social component.

This is a pretty fun game to play, and thee is literally hours of play to be had.

Blocks Party Review

Blocks Party Review

Apr 19, 2013

Simple games will always find a home with me. Blocks Party, come on in.

Blocks Party is a game with an easy premise. You guide a rolling ball on a track with plenty of bonuses and obstacles to the end as fast as possible. Now, it’s the type of obstacles — coupled with the breadth of control options — that really made the game such a compelling option for me.

The colors were sharp, allowing for the visual separation that made playing a quick-reaction game of this type possible. It was a rich fantasy environment, with beautiful pastels outlining the sky, the ground and everything in block1between. The green foliage that showed up in most screens evoked memories of the Dorothy prancing down the Yellow Brick Road.

Controlling the game via the touchscreen was mostly intuitive, if a bit jerky at first. The default movement of Mr Rollio — the ball, thank you very much — was forward. Even after hitting an obstacle, he gathered his wits, and continued the forward movement. I could touch the screen to the left or right to guide evasive or purposeful movement in the respective direction. I had goals on the runs, one of which was to free caged comrades by barreling into the jail structures. The gameplay moved from fairly easy, fixed structures to moving barriers that forced me to think proactively. I liked the special powers; jetpacks ALWAYS make things better.

I would be practically criminally derelict if I didn’t mention the Green Throttle functionality. My review of the bluetooth gamepad led me to this game. It worked very well with this title, and I actually think, for better or worse, the game actually worked better with it. Simple joystick movement replicated the onscreen inputs, and there was no noticeable lag. I loved that the game morphed into something more when paired with the control (along with HDMI adapters).

All in all, it was a fun game, with or without the gamepad, and that was its true testimonial.