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Air Mail Review
Review Score:

Air Mail, an aerial action game developed by N-Fusion Interactive and published by Chillingo, is now available from the app store. A high-flying and highly-enjoyable experience, Air Mail allows you to take to the skies like few others.

Air Mail Pros:

  • Detailed and delightful environments with gameplay and animations similar to Glyder
  • Soundtrack is cheerful and airy
  • Multiple control schemes to fit your style
  • Express Delivery and Explore modes offer additional ways to play
  • GameCenter and Crystal integration for global leaderboards and achievements

Air Mail Cons:

  • Cut scenes feel shoehorned in
  • Gameplay can feel repetitive after a while

Air Mail contains a 25-level Mission mode, an endless Express Delivery mode, and a free-flying Exploration mode. Selecting either a young boy or girl as your pilot, you control a biplane as it dips, twists, and soars through beautiful environments replete with narrow passages, tall towers, chain islands, wide open spaces, and more. As a delivery person, you use your plane to pick up and drop off packages as efficiently as possible. There are also runs that involve flying through rings, scattering pigeons, lighting fireworks, and much more. There is no real combat involved in the game, but some mission types involve vandalism and clandestine measures that aid cleverly in preventing combat. In Mission mode, you have a strict time limit within which you are asked to complete your task. The end-of-level ratings take into account how quickly you accomplished your goal, the level of damage you incurred, and your accuracy. These numbers are additionally translated into a star rating from 1 to 5. The different runs are incorporated into a fairly interesting story line delivered via cut scenes that break up the action.

The graphics are terrific, using lot of color and great locale designs to create vibrant and exciting areas in which to travel. The animations and gameplay are reminiscent of the Glyder games, though you are not restricted to gravity and updrafts to power your movements. A throttle button in the lower right corner aids in speed control, allowing you to cover more ground quickly or slowing you down for more precise control. Rings, item pick-ups, and drop-off zones are fairly easy to find, especially given their protruding light beams, arrows, and distinguishing colors that are visible from afar. Get a bit lost, and a helpful arrow appears to alert you to the lost path, though you often have a number of options available. The soundtrack is cheery, matching the happy feeling emoted by the water-bound cities. A number of sound effects and auditory clues aid in your journey. There are multiple control schemes available, including tilt, touch, and advanced options. Tilting obviously uses the accelerometer for input, touch provides a virtual pad, and the advanced controls use a combination of tilt and on-screen sliders earmarked for expert pilots. They all work well, but we found the first two to be easiest to use when getting a feel for the game.

Replay value is very good, as you can re-run missions to earn missed stars, try to last longer than previous flights in Survival, or just enjoy the awesome experience of aerial freedom while exploring the various locations. There are even some hidden items to search out if you so desire. Easy, Normal, and Hard difficulty levels give you the ability to tailor the gameplay to your liking. GameCenter and Crystal integration offers global leaderboards and more than a dozen achievements to earn. A universal app for $4.99, Air Mail is a 4.5-Dimple joy.

Air Mail Review, reviewed by Kevin on 2012-06-01T00:59:03+00:00 rating 4.5 out of 5

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