Sunday, November 20, 2011

Don't Run With A Plasma Sword - PREVIEW/REVIEW

We've all experienced the thrill of endless games on the App Store.  Looking way back at games like Cube Runner, it's easy to see that we have come a long way. Xperimentalz Games' newest creation, Don't Run With A Plasma Sword, boasts some unique features for an endless runner.
The first thing you will notice when you load up DRWPS is its awesome, retro style.  Artwork is very crisp, and the story of the game is told in a "comic-book" fashion.  There is a good sense of humor as well with some funny lines on loading screens.  In terms of music, the soundtrack and the sound effects are a perfect mix of a spooky superhero theme and retro.  The upbeat tunes match perfectly with the genre and create an addicting experience.
One of the most important aspects of platformer style games is the controls. After playing for a while, it's apparent that Xperimentalz put some good thought into it because they nailed the controls. The left side of the screen is reserved for jumping (top half of screen) and sliding (bottom half), while the right side is reserved for attacks. This layout is perfectly comfortable for me and hasn't cost me any deaths. (that's a GOOD thing)

Moving deeper into the game, there are a total of 28 story levels spread across 4 chapters. Levels are randomly generated, meaning enemies, platforms, obstacles and power-ups are different each time. Your goal in each level is to run a certain distance while jumping, stabbing, and sliding your way through anything that gets in your way.  Each chapter features its own boss battle which proved to be pretty challenging. Bosses ranged from giant UFOs to evil robot-stilt-wearing mastermind. Basically, to beat a boss you have to dodge all of his attacks and wait until you have an opening to attack. It sounds simple but timing and reactions are crucial to these levels especially.  There is also an endless level to go along with each of the 4 chapters. These are randomly generated like the story levels, but your goal is to run as far as you can.
Character Upgrades Rock!
DRWPS sports a slick RPG-upgrade system as well. Character upgrades like additional attacks, extra health, and double jumping are available, as well as cosmetic stuff like different colored swords or clothes. There are some IAPs included, but I can't stress enough that they are completely optional. Don't shy away when you hear "IAP". They are simple point packages that speed up the upgrade process. Honestly, if you play the game enough to enjoy it, then there won't be any need to buy extra points.
To add to the replay value, Xperimentalz has integrated GameCenter and Openfeint Leaderboards and Achievements. There are leaderboards for every level along with a total of 36 achievements.
Xperimentalz Games has created what I believe is a unique breed of endless running game. How often do you get to play a game that isn't called "Star Wars" where you run around with a light saber? I can assure you that Don't Run With a Plasma Sword will be worth every penny that it costs. Grab your sword and save the world! Don't Run With A Plasma Sword will be launching on November 30th for $0.99.


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