Saturday, December 23, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: SokoLite

Developed by PTM

"Challenging game with inifite levels!"

: SokoLite, developed by PTM, a finnish Flash Lite Dev company, is a Flash Lite 1.1 remake of "Sokoban", a classic puzzle game, and really impresses for the large amount of levels (100). It also features an useful level saving system (you wouldn´t want to go through all the levels again if you reached level 50 or so) and the possibility to dynamically load levels from the web, which grants additional hours of fun. The "undo" and "restart" function are unlimited available during the game, so be prepared to play the same level over and over until you find the correct solution. An online hi-scores system is also planned in further versions.

The game is addictive and gets really challenging after the first levels, producing an excellent brain exercise.

The good: The multiple levels and challenging puzzles are the stronger points. The sound was used very well and the battery/signal meter inside the game are a nice idea.

The bad: The background graphic is quite distracting and the vision gets "tired" after a few minutes playing.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: Log Jam

Log Jam
Developed by Blue Sky North

"Blue Sky North pushed the bar on Flash Lite game development and created the perfect mobile game."

Overview: This must be one of the most interesting mobile game cases around. Developed by Blue Sky North, Log Jam was released in two versions: 01 for the iRiver U10 portable device and 01 for S60 phones. In both platforms they succeeded to provide the best Flash Lite game to date. When you play it on the iRiver, there´s a feeling that the device itself was specially designed for the game, due the fact the game controls fit exactly the U10 navigation system.

The main objective of the game is to keep the lumberjack buddy spinning on the log as long as possible. When the player reaches 40-45 seconds, the game speed is increased and it turns a bit harder to control.

There are slightly minor differences in the available versions (due to hardware limitations and input methods aspects), considering the score is not persistent on S60 phones, but works well on the U10, and, on the phone, it looks like to be a little easier to achieve better times.

The good: The game is just perfect. Original concept, professional graphics and really FUN gameplay. Everyone around always want to give it a try, so the experience can turn into a huge group activity.

The bad: No sound at all.

Flash Mobile Game Review: Whack Attack

Whack Attack
Developed by DRD Interactive (Moket)

"If you have five minutes to spare, this is the game."

Overview: Published by Moket, an australian Flash Lite game development company, this is one of the most downloaded games in Adobe Flash Lite Exchange, with over 6,000 hits. The game was precisely targeted for mobile devices: light graphics, simple rules and easy gameplay. The player must hit as many "imps" as possible in a short period of time. The imps come up and down from all the nine spots placed on the screen, each one corresponding to a numeric key (1-9) on the phone.

The good: Easy gameplay makes it a great mobile leisure option for all ages.

The bad: Gets repetitive after a few minutes (but, hey, that´s the point, isn´t it?) and there´s no temporary score storage. A background music would be a nice touch too.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: Four Play

Four Play
Developed by Nitrome

"Cute graphics, nice theme but lacks performance."

Overview: This game looks like to be the first Flash Lite game by Nitrome, a tradional Flash game development company. As any other experience, it has really strong and some weak points. The main game objective is to "drop" 04 aliens of your own color in order to form a line (horizontal, vertical or diagonal). Nitrome picked up a great game stlye for a casual game and also offers players the chance to play against each other on the same device (it may sound crazy, but I really like this idea).

The good: The graphics and color choices have a professional look, with a "pixel tendency" style. Well, so professional that could be ported to J2ME easily (I don't like this idea...No, I don´t).

The bad: Slow performance. The game speed affected my interest over the game after 30 seconds, plus, the "...turn" warning showing up all the time, gets really annoying too. A faster frame rate or graphic optimization would be very useful.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: GO SUSHI

Developed by Blue Sky North

"Simple, beautiful and addictive."

Overview: The game has a simple engine where the player must "eat" the sushis Yoshi is currently thinking. The game starts really easy and gets smoothly harder after each level. Eating the "wasabes" extends your time in five seconds, so grab them whenever you get a chance. The game is also available on a previous Flash Lite 1.0 version and one for the iRiver U10, the korean portable media player. GO SUSHI is a great example of how a simple game can be a great and fun experience.

The good: Perfect vector graphics with nice and detailed sushis. The background colors contrast really great with the character and food, making a wonderful colorful combination.

The bad: Animations are really basic and doesn´t match the graphics sophistication. The "wasabe" eating animation is very similar to the "wrong" sushi one, wich can be confusing for the player.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: Journey of Jin: Mobisode 2

Journey of Jin: Mobisode 2
Developed by Flownaway

"More than just a casual game, Journey of Jin brings a deeper experience for Flash Lite enabled phone users. "

Overview: Journey of Jin is a RPG game different from anything ever made for Flash Lite. The player must guide "Jin" through a desert valley where he faces several enemies along the way to the "West". The battles are turn based and the player can either attack, throw a spell, retreat or defend. (Almost) Every battle won, adds extra points to Jin´s skills (power, magic, armor and xp). The game keeps has a very stylish art concept and can keep you entertained for a few good minutes.

The good: The guys at Flownaway worked hard to produce a game with a solid storyline and guess what? They did a nice job. The battle system is also really interesting, making each battle unique, even against the same enemies. The music quality is also very good and fits the game theme.

The bad: There´s no instructions screen for the game controls, wich can make the new players' life a bit harder. After you get the handle of the battle system, the game looks really short and you will have to wait for Mobisode 3 to play the next level. A "save/load game" system would also be very useful.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Flash Mobile Game Review: Dawn of the Fly - Chapter One

Dawn of the Fly - Chapter One
Developed by Breakdesign

"This game is for Flash Lite what Pac-Man is for videogames. Breakdesign created a classic."

Dawn of the Fly is really fun game with a magic touch of sense of humour. The player controls a little "something" (that happens to be the main character) and the objective is really simple: eat as many flies as you can in a short period of time. Green flies makes your energy bar go up and red ones decrease it. If your energy bar is over, our little "friend" simply puts a bullet on his own head or gets killed in some other bizarre (and funny) way. The flies get way quicker after each level and your energy bar is not restored, so try keeping it up since level 1 if you plan to go any further in the game.

Hint: You can eat multiple flies pressing 2, 5 and 8 keys at the same time.

The good: There´s a lot to say about this game, but it´s original concept (design, game characters and music) is what makes it one the best flash lite games to date. Breakdesign "dark&evil-but-funny" style produced a state of the art game for mobile devices. Great features as online score submission, idle system with direct access to phone functionalities, wallpapers and update link turns the game into a real immersive experience.

The bad: Poor background scenarios and the "camera" access option in the idle menu doesn´t work in all phones.