Monday, November 19, 2012

Mobile Game Review - Wreck-It Ralph

Disney's Wreck-It Ralph (available on iOS and Android) as you might expect, is a game based on Disney's Wreck-It Ralph, an absolutely fantastic movie you should go see right away. More specifically, the game is a collection of three games, with a fourth to come, based on the games the characters visit during the film. As such, I should say a few things about the games individually.

Fix-It Felix Jr.

"Fix-It Felix Jr." is the actual arcade game which the main character of the film, Ralph, is from. You see the game quite a bit in the film, and I'm glad to say that not only does it look exactly like it appears there, but it's a lot of fun on it's own, even without the ties to the film. You play the title character, Fix-It Felix Jr., as you try to fix the windows which Ralph has wrecked, and avoid falling bricks and flying ducks. You also collect pies to grant you temporary invincibility, and double points gained during the effect.

As you climb the building, and rack up points for fixing windows (and not running out of time), the actual stage gets more complicated, as flower planters, and open blinds create obstacles  preventing you from moving in certain directions.

It's a simple concept, but one that's extremely difficult to master, especially as obstacles start appearing to limit your movement. This has quickly become one of my favorite games on my phone, and I highly recommend the game for this alone, the ninety nine cents are absolutely worth it for this alone, as this is a five star phone game.

Sugar Rush Sweet Climber

Unfortunately, while I still recommend the app purchase for the first game alone, the other two are... Not so great. Specifically, "Sugar Rush Sweet Climber" is practically worthless. The game plays as a Doodle Jump clone, and on paper there's nothing wrong with that, as Doodle Jump is a very, very fun game. Unfortunately, the issue arises with the fact that "Sugar Rush Sweet Climber" is oddly sluggish, and unresponsive to your movments, making it very difficult to play.

It's disappointing, too, as the actual "Sugar Rush" game seen in the movie is quite obviously a play on Mario Kart, and if they had released that game, in full, as an actual Mario Kart mobile clone, even if they had charged five dollars for it, that would have been really great. Unfortunately, the didn't and "Sugar Rush Sweet Climber" is a very disappointing, halfhearted effort.

Hero's Duty

"Hero's Duty" is better than "Sugar Rush Sweet Climber" purely because it's actually functional. This version of "Hero's Duty", unlike the one we see in the film, is a dual joystick shooter. It's... Fine, I guess. I mean, it works. If that's your thing, go for it I guess.

All I really have to say about this game is that there are much, much better dual joystick shooters on both iOS and Android. Ones which are actually creative, and fun. I'd recommend Beat Hazard Ultra, which just launched on Android a few days ago. Although it's a lot more than this app (and admittedly I haven't gotten the paid version on my phone yet, I've played a lot of the game on the computer), it's also a much more interesting, and inspired take on the game.

Again, it's disappointing that they didn't go the extra mile, and create the actual "Hero's Duty" game seen in the film. If they had created a first-person shoot like N.O.V.A. (a popular android FPS), and charged five or six bucks for it, just like with Sugar Rush, that would have been a much more interesting course to take, and one that I imagine would have paid off for them in the end.

There's a fourth game promised on a coming soon page, "Turbotime", which is seen in the film, but telling you how would be a spoiler. Personally, as "Turbotime" was supposed to be an 8-Bit racer in the film, I'm hoping they'll stick closer to the "Fix-It Felix Jr." method of actually creating a fun, interesting arcade game, instead of just making a crappy flash game which would have gotten stuck on Disney's website five years ago.

Don't get me wrong, this app is definitely worth your time and dollar, just know that while a third of the games included in the collection are fantastic, the other two are mediocre, to just plain bad.

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