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Chromanoids™ Review

By , on May 16, 2011

Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • Credit system adds an interesting arcade-like feel to the game; continuing becomes a rare commodity.
  • Neon-highlighted aesthetic accentuates the gameplay.
  • Multiple game modes to cater to various skill levels.


  • Gets lots in the mix of other 'Missile Command'-like titles.
  • Some enemies can feel a bit 'cheap' in their difficulty; it's hard enough to get to see them, let alone practice fighting them.


Chromanoids is an interesting experiment in creating a real arcade-like feel without needing to nickel and dime customers with micro-purchases.

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

There are some game concepts that remain insanely compelling for decades, thanks in part to the way they've influenced other titles, but also because they're simple enough to grasp immediately and challenging enough to keep you coming back for more. Chromanoids by Hothead Games takes another crack at the Missile Command formula, adding a color-based twist and managing to bring an arcade-like feel thanks its unique 'credit' system.

At its most basic level players need only to tap the screen to launch a missile that explodes at the target location, destroying anything that happens to cross the blast zone. The twist is that most chromanoids sport a unique color that can only be destroyed by matching it, however partial matches can count (for example, green will eliminate blue or yellow), albeit for less points. While enemies start out fairly mundane, coming in quickly or slowly and possibly with a shield in place, later enemies start to get downright nasty, including Chromanoids that shift color as they move.

The main campaign acts as a sort of extended tutorial, with each of its 'waves' introducing new elements that need to be mastered before moving on (including the use of power-ups). Just don't mistake this for an easy ride as things get out of control quite quickly and should you run out of lives you can only continue without restarting by spending 'credits'. Much like an arcade, credits represent a rare commodity for pushing beyond a difficulty level you can't quite conquer and players can earn more credits simply through playing and achieving minor feats such as a large 'hit chain'; reaching a specific wave; and even loading up the game daily for a credit boost. If you're feeling particularly flush you can spend these credits on purchasing power-ups, however they're not cheap and easier to obtain through playing the modes directly.

Given that Chromanoids is set in space and you're fighting invading hordes of enemies, it's no surprise to see a neon-highlighted aesthetic to the visuals, but this works to assist the color-based gameplay instead of simply mimicking recent trends. Multiple game modes mix up the challenge, giving players an opportunity to either raise the difficulty cap or simplify things to a more traditional Missile Command clone; in either case gamers of all walks are covered.

Ultimately, Chromanoids doesn't feel particularly special as you go through the same motions you've gone through dozens, if not hundreds of times before with other similar titles. In this way it's a bit disappointing to play, however if you fancy yourself a dead-eye at aiming and you're after a new challenge with a true arcade feel it's worth checking this title out.


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nataly 7 years, 1 month ago

it looks great...