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Quick Reviews from the Request Desk – 4.18.11
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Here’s another bunch of quick reviews from our request desk.

Color Blaster Game

Color Blaster Game is a physics-based puzzler from Paper Corn Media. There are 75 levels to play through, with the goal of breaking paint-filled light bulbs by flinging a finite number of pinwheels around the board. There are a handful of obstacles to avoid, such as bubbles that capture the pinwheel in mid-air, as well as barriers to ricochet the pinwheel off of in an effort to reach light bulbs in out of the way places. Pinwheels are flung from the lower-left corner, in similar style to Angry Birds or any number of cannon-based games. There is a very faint aiming line to use in directing your shot, and the farther back you drag your finger, the more powerful the shot should be. In our experience, we didn’t notice a great difference between a tiny drag or a lengthy drag. The pinwheel also moved so quickly that it was hard to enjoy the game. The popping of the bulbs would replace the bulb with a static color splash image that fades out after a few seconds, though it would have been nice if this was a more animated experience, with varied configurations or dripping paint. You receive a score and a number of stars for successful completion of the levels, but the scoring didn’t seem to follow any specific parameters. It’s unclear if speed factors in at all, but replaying levels in nearly the same manner produced very different scores. The graphics are decent, featuring Retina support for crisp images most noticeable in the bulbs themselves. The bubbly colorful background is cheerful and the audio reflects this lightheartedness, too. Controls are easy to use, employing only the drag-and-release method. Replay value is low, as the game isn’t all that compelling and it gets repetitive quickly, despite throwing in a couple of extra obstacles as you progress. GameCenter and OpenFeint integration bring leaderboards and achievements to give gamers something to shoot for, and the universal build offers value to players with multiple devices. At $0.99, it’s a worthwhile 3.5-Dimple investment for fans of the genre, but it didn’t manage to set itself apart from the more popular variations on this theme.

Operation WOW

Operation WOW from Ivanovich Games is a frantic shooting gallery game with a militaristic theme. There are 3 game modes to play: Arcade, Endless, and Ultra-Hard Endless. There are also 2 mini-games: Targets and Meat Ninja. Arcade mode contains 6 missions in varying environments: Base Camp, Jungle, Warehouse, Village, Rescue, and Airport, while the other two measure how long you survive before dying in two different difficulty levels. In these modes, you will encounter crazy numbers of enemies on-screen, but you have an advantage while dispatching them thanks to the multi-touch support that allows you to fire several shots at once. Sliding a finger up the screen tosses a grenade into the mix. There are also a handful of people and items to avoid shooting, lest you incur a penalty. A series of special items can be shot to give you health, extra ammo, additional grenades, or freeze time while targeting a number of simultaneous shots. It’s quite easy to run out of ammo, so you’ll have to be accurate and conservative. Taking fire and losing health is also easy to do, so quickness will be beneficial. The end of each session rates you on remaining ammo, remaining health or time survived, and accuracy to give you a final score. In addition to the main game modes, you can play Targets, where red and green targets will pop up that require you to shoot only the green ones. It tests speed, accuracy, and the ability to quickly discern a proper target from one to avoid, which are all necessary skills to succeed in Arcade mode. Meat Ninja plays like Fruit Ninja, except that the fruit is replaced by meat and the bombs are replaced by grenades. The graphics are clean and cartoonish, the sound effects complement the military theme, and the controls are very responsive. GameCenter integration brings global leaderboards and over a dozen achievements, while the three difficulty levels allow you to tailor the game to your skill level. It’s a fun timewaster that turns out to be more engaging than we expected. For $0.99, Operation WOW is a 4-Dimple offering.

AppZilla 2 -- 100 in 1!

AppZilla 2 – 100 in 1! is a smorgasbord of great little apps from Fossil Software. The apps are laid out similar to the home screens of an iDevice, with the ability to swipe side-to-side to access more. There is a ton of stuff to wade through and, though not all will be of much value, there is enough great stuff hear to make this an incredible value. AppZilla 2 gives you access to music apps (pitch pipe, metronome), Google apps (Talk, Reader, Docs, Books, Voice), scanners (barcode, police), color (detect, calculator), lights (strobe, book light, flashlight), timers (cook, grill), health (heart rate calc, BMI calc, BMR calc), measurements (plumb bob, clinometer, protractor, ruler, level), and a ton of other reference apps and goofy timewasters, like the voodoo doll or reaction game. Most of the apps have settings you can change, too. You can also reorder the apps, tag favorites, hide/unhide apps, passcode protect apps, and set custom themes and wallpapers. This app could easily replace a handful of single apps that you already have on your device, rendering them redundant and unnecessary. We were quite impressed with the wealth of great stuff here, and will surely find use for many of them over the life of our device. For the introductory sale price of $0.99, you can have each app for less than a penny. AppZilla 2 is a 4-Dimple swiss army knife for the digital age.

Has anyone else tried these yet? What are your thoughts? Let us here them in the comments section!





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