Sunday, September 11, 2011

Wildlings - 0.99 (Metamoki, Inc.)

Wildlings is a new arcade tap defense game from Metamoki, Inc. In it, you will need to use different parent Wildlings to keep evil creeps away from your babies, while collecting sun-power, using power-ups, and finding pieces of each ship that will let you travel to the next world, and get the Wildlings to their final destination. It might sound a little cheesy, but as it turns out, it’s a very good game with plenty of strategic elements to keep even the most hardened defensive gamer on their toes.

To start it off, you’re given 1 slightly week bird to protect 3 babies in their nest. To move the bird around, you just tap on the screen where you want the bird to move to. To make the bird attack an enemy, you just need to tap on it. There are some cases where a group of enemies will come towards the nest, and to deal with those, you’ll just need to tap on one of the enemies, and then your bird will attack the whole group, one by one. Each enemy that’s killed drops a certain amount of sun power, depending on how strong they are. Some enemies will take multiple taps in order for them to be defeated, and tapping repeatedly makes the parent Wildling attack and move quicker and more ferociously. The babies in the nest also drop sun power, but on a timed schedule, usually only dropping 2 to 4 sun pieces in each level. Collecting the sun power is essential for using your power-ups, once they’re unlocked, and are needed to unlock the Wildling’s final destination, which requires a total of 3,000 sun points to unlock. Sun points that you do not use on power-ups in each level are stored, and put towards this 3,000 point total, or you can unlock the final destination with an IAP that’s $0.99.
There are 3 different worlds, each with 15 levels. These 3 worlds each have different enemies, and different Wildlings that you’ll need to use to protect the nests. Each world is also varied with the environments, giving you a different feeling each time you move to the next one. After each level, you’re given an item. These items are either a new power-up, a new parent Wildling to help you protect the babies, or a piece of a boat that you will need in order to move on in the game. There’s also a 3 star rating for each level, one for completing the level, one for not loosing any babies, and one for completing the level without having the nest touched. You are able to retrieve your babies if they’re taken by attacking the evil creep that took it, but if you loose all 3 babies, it’s game over.
The power-ups also change as you move on throughout the worlds. In the first world, you’ll get a dust-storm power-up, and a cherry bomb power-up. The dust storm makes it so that none of the enemies can see, and then can’t move for a short period of time, and costs 5 sun points, while the cherry bomb destroys all the enemies in play, and costs 20 sun points. As you move on, you’ll collect different power-ups, one cheap and good for holding off or sunning large groups of enemies, and one expensive, good for getting rid of enemies when there’s too many of them.
The graphics in Wildlings are very polished, and look great. Along with the animations for each of the different babies, parents, and enemies, it looks, and feels very professional. Each of the different environments are colored extremely well, and everything in play really stands out when set against them. When you use the power-ups, these animations also look great, from the dust storms and explosions to the lava pits and big earth slam.
Metamoki, Inc. has done a great job with creating a world for the Wildlings, and making that world a blast to play in. The tapping mechanics work extremely well, and the added strategy of needing to know what enemies pose the biggest threat, move quickly, and need to be taken out before other enemies also fills the game with quite a bit of action. The game looks and feels great, and you can tell that a lot of work has gone into the game. It is supported by GameCenter, but the leader board is a total of the number of sun points you’ve collected. This is my only complaint about the game because pretty much, the #1 spot is held by the person that’s put the most time into the game. Theoretically, the #1 spot could be a person that just replayed the first 5 levels over and over again, and these types of leaderboards usually turn people off, because it pretty much guarantees that the first person that bought the game, or the person that has more free time will rule the #1 spot instead of the best player, and is almost like having a leaderboard for the amount of time you‘ve been playing. There are also no achievements, which makes the GameCenter integration kind of flimsy. But in the end, $0.99 is a great price for this game, and it’s one that will give you plenty of gameplay, and entertainment, and is great for gamers of all ages, while still keeping it’s challenging gameplay in tact.

Wildlings gets a score of 8.5 out of 10.



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