Nano Fighter - $0.99 BUY NOW
So this all started with me saying I wanted a PowerUP Forever type game on the iPhone. Turns out Nano Fighter was just released so I decided to give it a shot. The game is a hybrid between Powerup Forever and Geometry Wars. I played the first 11 levels before I got nabbed by a large creepy crawly but the journey there was absolutely awesome. I'll detail the reasons why this game is getting such a high score below.
From the second the title screen "locks down" with the menu and logo you kind of wonder what you're getting into here. The menu is simple, no options, simply play, local/online hi-scores and instructions. Hitting any of the scoring features takes you to the screenshots attached above, when you hit play though, it takes you to a level briefing screen saying which types of enemies you will encounter and displaying what the upgrades look like.
Your little ship flies in from the side of the screen and the heads up display fires up letting you know to get ready for some action. The graphics are very slick. For such a seemingly dark game, the developer managed to display plenty of light effects, everything the player does, does to an enemy or an enemy does to the player is brilliantly lit up with crisp graphics that leave you wanting to blow more stuff up.
Not only are the graphics crisp, they're fast and you absolutely can't resist flying your ship around the screen, dodging enemies, blowing them up, just to see the fireworks show. One thing I really found slick was actually an interface element, the thumb controls. When the game first loads up, they're represented as two small circles, the second you place a finger on one of them, they "PUMP" up, and this is so satisfying it feels like the controls are saying back to the player "LOCK AND LOAD".
The player, enemies, fire, powerups, etc.. are all consistently done in a slightly better style than geometry wars and are very easy to see making dodging a game of lightning reflexes which is absolutely crucial in a game like this.
When I first fired the game up I turned the sound all the way up as well and I am glad that I did. When the title screen locks down you hear a sound that also locks down and sets a good feel for the game to start. Once you're playing the game theres a nice soundtrack that sits in the background, like it should in a game, instead of overwhelming the foreground and distracting the player. The sound effects in game are very satisfying sounding, leaving you wanting to "hit" more enemies, to hear the chain reactions from your onslought of fire. This combined with the graphics creates a great arcade experience.
Now for the best part My hats off to the developer for the handling in this game. I was able to load the game up, press play, land my thumbs on those awesome thumb landing pads and just have at it. Left thumb controls movement, right thumb controls fire and I personally had no issue with the sensitivity of these or otherwise. As far as translating what your fingers are doing to whats going on in the game, its obvious the developer has spent some time fine tuning these controls because the dodging in between hordes of enemies is absolutely possible due to the fine tuning.
I also want to mention I hadn't noticed the big bomb button on the middle of the screen until I wanted to hit a pause button ( which is actually the menu button at the top right ) but found out it was a bomb that not only slowed down time but blew everything up on the screen with a magnificent shockwave of absolute destruction!
Another great feature of mention is the ability to "warp" to a level that you've waypointed before. I don't know how waypoints are determined, but I was able to go back to levels 3, 5 and 11, which was awesome!
One word, arcade. This game has absolute arcade appeal. Not only does it have the online scoring for competitive play, the gameplay itself is reminiscent of an older generation of games long gone. The replay value on this game is excellent, I've noticed the current leader of the hi-score board managed to get to level 50 something, who knows how many levels there are. I review quite a few games, but this is one of the only ones that I am definitely going to be playing for a long time and I'm totally glad I got it.
The excitement you feel while playing the game definitely gives you that "weeee" feeling while you're playing and narrowly avoiding those close calls.
I really don't think that I need say more, at the time of this reviews writing the game is 99 cents and that's the lowest you can go. I'd easily pay 2.99 or 3.99 for this game if it had better marketing that talked about all of its awesome features, hint hint, dev
So yeah, great game, highly recommend it, what are you waiting for, go get it now!
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