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App Review: Spy Bot Chronicles by IUGO Mobile Entertainment Inc.

August 15, 2009 by Dorothy  
Filed under Daily App Reviews, Entertainment, Games, Kids

spybotchronicles1 150x150 App Review: Spy Bot Chronicles by IUGO Mobile Entertainment Inc.For those who enjoyed the Toy Bot Diaries, IUGO Modile Entertainment has released another game that let’s you join in the adventures of Toy Bot.  This time, Toy Bot has been kidnapped by the evil Thief Bot.  Spy Bot is the only one that can save him.  Your job is to help Spy Bot navigate levels to find Thief Bot’s hideout and save him.

There are four zones in the app that contain several levels each.  To conquer a level you must find your way to the green check mark at the end of the level.  Along the way you run into enemies that try to push you off of ledges and difficult feats to perform.  I found the hardest part of the levels was not getting past the enemies, although that did prove challenging at times.  Rather, the hardest part for me was being able to complete jumps and navigate the obstacles in the level.

The controls work well but require some coordination to get Spy Bot to do what you want him to do.  There are two arrow buttons in the lower left corner of the screen that move Spy Bot left and right.  In the lower right corner is a jump button.  Press once to jump, press and hold to jump higher, and press a second time while Spy Bot is in the air to double jump.  Double jumping is often the only way to get where you need to go.  I also found that sometimes it was easier to complete a difficult jmp if I pressed the jump button first and then steered Spy Bot left or right.  Your only weapon is a laser that shoots from the top of your helmet.  To shoot the laser, you simply tap on the screen.  The place that you tap is the direction in which the laser will shoot, even if you are facing the other direction.

Along your way, there are check points to which you can return if you lose your three lives.  There are also items that you can collect and yellow and green plus signs that help refill your life.  There are also many objects that are labeled as hackable.  At first, this term was very confusing to me.  However, it quickly became clear that these hackable objects merely change some physical feature on the screen when you tap on them.  For example, they may open a door or rotate platform so that you can move forward.  These hackable objects are all marked with an orange lightning bolt.  It is not always apparent what will happen when you tap it.  Some of them were quite a surprise.

Spy Bot Chronicles is a challenging game that is fun to play.  That graphics are great and the game play is smooth.

Developer’s Website: http://www.iugome.com/

App Review: Star Hogs by IUGO Mobile Entertainment Inc.

July 30, 2009 by Dorothy  
Filed under Daily App Reviews, Entertainment, Games

starhogs2 150x150 App Review: Star Hogs by IUGO Mobile Entertainment Inc.Star Hogs is a great turn based shooter game.  For those who like iShoot, here is a game for you.  This time around instead of being a tank, you are a space ship trying to destroy your opponent before they can destroy you.

The first time you launch the game, it will offer you a short tutorial.  The tutorial walks you through the basics of the game and the controls.  Most of it you could probably pick up on your own by just playing the game, assuming you are familiar with this type of game.  In addition to the tutorial, there are three different game play modes; Campaign, Free Play, and Online.  Campaign mode consists of consecutive levels that you play against a computer generated opponent.  When you conquer your opponent, you unlock the next level, as well as new weapons and equipment.  You can choose to play on easy, medium, or hard difficulty.  Free Play mode offers some more flexibility.  You can choose the setup of the terrain, how many ships each player has, and which ship you want to use.  You can also choose your opponent (you can have up to 3) from computer generated opponents of different ability levels, or you can choose to play against another human being.  This option allows you to play with up to three friends on the same device.  Online games let you join or create an online game room and play with others.  For each type of game you have the option to choose your ship from the ones in your hangar and customize them and their weapons.

The controls for the game are quite simple and easy to pick up.  Players take turns shooting at one another’s ships until only one person’s ships remain.  There are a couple of things that can signal the end of your turn.  In Free Play and Online games, there is a time limit of 30 seconds.  If you run out of time, obviously, your turn is over.  Also, if your ship runs out of energy, your turn is over.  Shooting at the enemy or moving your own ship both require energy.  So, keep an eye on the energy meter at the bottom of the screen.  The energy goes fast.  However, it is refilled again at the beginning of each turn.  You can also pick up objects that help refill your energy, armor, and money.  Getting these objects requires that you move your ship to where they are, which requires an expenditure of energy.  Sometimes, it uses more energy than it is worth to go after them.

To shoot an opponent, you must first choose your weapon.  Then, aim the shot by tapping on the screen to change the trajectory.  Next, tap and hold your finger on the Fire button until the power meter reaches the desired level.  Release your finger to fire the shot.  It may take a few practice shots to get the hang of aiming and firing to actually hit an opponent.  Luckily, the power and trajectory of the previous shot are marked so that you can make the desired adjustments based on the last shot’s outcome.  Like other games in this genre, the shots that miss deform the landscape around the ships and often change the game entirely.

In the playing that I have done with this app, I did not find anything that was cumbersome or awkward.  The levels did present a challenge, but nothing that a little practice wouldn’t overcome.  The controls seemed easier to use and more straight forward than other turn based shooting games that I have tried.  With it now on sale for only $0.99, Star Hogs is a great game to grab.

Developer’s Website: http://www.iugome.com/starhogs.html

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