Games iOS Reviews

Game Time : The Age of Industry

In honor of Skynet going online, we decided to pay special attention to machines and the chaos they create in this week’s Game Time. Sure, there’s a bit of irony in an Apple-centric mag covering the possibility of machines being evil, but we consider it our duty to our readers to report our findings.

Exhaust Thing

$0.99
Fencing Fleas
iPhone

The actual, real-life tagline for Exhaust Thing is “Made by man, killing man.” And we’re pretty sure a simpler game could not be more heavy-handed. Here are the intro screens:

Buildings make smoke ->
Smoke eats the ozone layer ->
Humans perish. Still, what it lacks in subtlty, it makes up for in a fun visual style.
So how do you play? Easy, scroll around an increasingly industrialized planet and tap on themeatballs clouds that are destroying the ozone. Simple? Very. Hard? Ridiculously.
As if to discourage the human race even more, Fencing Fleas opted to make this game freaking impossible. It adds infinite frustration to the tapping formula, which makes the game fun to come back to. Once you start getting the hang of things and unlocking new levels, the gameplay evolves a bit. Different color clouds are worth different amounts of points and some will release icons that allow you to purchase power ups with a variety of uses-including healing the atmosphere. Score.
Meatballs Clouds are eating the ozone.

Gears

$1.99
Crescent Moon Games
iPhone

Machines are mostly a backdrop in Gears, an excellent balance game released on April 28. But we won’t be deceived by what some would perceive as a “lack of plot.”  The fact that everything is steampunk-style machinery insinuates that all organic life has been wiped out and now machines have nothing to do, but roll balls through puzzles… we think.

That’s pretty much the gist of the game, you can either tilt your device (or swipe across the screen) to shoot a ball through various industrial landscapes, collecting icons and unlocking new routes, while racing to the finish. Tilting is the far superior mode of play and because it’s more difficult the game awards bonus points to those that use it.
Cautiously progressing through each level is a surefire way to beat the game, but the faster you go the more points you’ll get – meaning you’ll likely play each level over and over until you’ve think you have an unbeatable score.

Our best score (on World 1, Level 4) still didn’t earn a Gold prize, but we were pretty happy about it anyway.

Editor’s High Score: 3,620
You can try to beat our score and upload it here. Special congratulations to Jin who slayed the competition in Unpleasant Horse last week. Shoot us a mesage and we’ll send you your prize.

Men vs Machines

Free
Glu Games Inc
Universal

Finally, a game where you get to blow stuff up. Not that tapping fluffy meatball clouds wasn’t cool, but all this industrialization has left us wanting to wreak a little havoc (maybe it’s something in the air…). That’s where Men vs Machines comes in.

Make no mistake about it, Men vs Machines is basically a total rehash of Gun Bros, a game also made by Glu Mobile. But hey, Gun Bros was fun so why not? You survive wave after wave of machine onslaught and, in doing so, get experience and gear bits. These can be turned in to additional weapons, guns, and refineries. There’s always another “next thing” and, if patience isn’t your thing, you can always just buy new guns and in-game currency through in-app purchases. But we don’t recommend it, the more you spend the less replay value the game has.
If you can avoid all those in-app purchases (the most expensive cost a hundred bucks) the game’s an awesome free offering.
That’s it for this week. Got a game you want to see featured? Make sure to sound off in the comments!