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Rocket Robo review (iOS / Universal)

February 3, 2014

rocket robo pic 0787

10 word description: Tilt controlled 2.5D scrolling puzzle game. Gravity, teleportation, water, traps.

rocket robo pic 0784

10 word review: Charming and visually attractive, occasionally frustrating with several missed opportunities.

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You will like this if you enjoy: Puzzle platformers (although it isn’t one). Physics puzzlers (it occasionally feels like one). 

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The good news: Very pretty. Lots of levels. A fair amount of visual and environmental variety between levels. Occasional glimpses of genius in the level designs. The tilt control method works well on iPhone/iPod Touch. The intro story is very endearing.

rocket robo pic 0801

The bad news: Although the tilt controls work well, the option of a relative touch control method would pull in a few more players, particularly on the iPad, where tilt controls are just not popular and for good reason. Some levels are frustrating enough to be annoying. There are no checkpoints. If this was my game, I’d give the robot some optional checkpoint flags to carry around, using them where the player felt it was necessary, with a level score adjusted depending on how many checkpoint flags were used. See, I come up with ideas like this in 5 minutes; this game was developed and play-tested for a lot longer than that. Anyway, moving on… No Game Center, no timed speed runs, no progress sync between devices, no real motivation to collecting the stars apart from to collect the stars. Map view is not as useful as it could be. The background and foreground blocks on some levels are sometimes way too similar in appearance. Game occasionally crashes.   

Level 40 - very frustrating

Level 40 – very frustrating

Arcadelife verdict: I liked this game enough to try really hard to ignore the omissions, missed opportunities and frustration of some levels. It’s a good game, not brilliant but good. Some of the levels are close to being extremely good, but there are enough average ones to balance it out, which isn’t really that great for the game. Compared to something similar like I Am Level, where I couldn’t stop thinking about the game when I wasn’t playing it, and kept going back again and again until I had 100% completed it, I never felt compelled to revisit a Rocket Robo level to collect all the stars. Much of the time, I was just relieved to reach the end of a level and move on to the next one.

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Overall, it’s a good looking variation on the platform/physics puzzling theme, but it has not quite nailed every aspect of the gameplay. I would recommend it with a few reservations on iPhone/iPod Touch, not so much on iPad where I gave up early on due to the tilt control method. 

Arcadelife rating

Presentation – 8/10
Visuals – 9/10
Controls – 8/10
Content – 8/10
Fun – 6/10
Final rating – 7/10

PRETTY GOOD

Rating categories explained here.
Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.01
iTunes link
Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
5th gen iPod Touch (iOS 7.0.4)
4th gen iPad (iOS 7.0.4) – not much, didn’t like the tilt control on this device.
This review was typed on a Das Keyboard Model S mechanical keyboard – check them out, they’re really rather groovy.
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