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Asteroids: Gunner Review

By , on November 11, 2011


Asteroids: Gunner
  • Publisher: Atari
  • Genre: Action
  • Released: 10 Nov, 2011
  • Size: 73.5 MB
  • Price: FREE!
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5

PROS

  • Free price-point with reasonable IAP model; plenty of unlockables not tied to cash.
  • Gorgeously smooth gameplay; easy to dance around with precision despite the onslaught of tiny rocks.
  • Purchasable 'power-ups' make the game more of a challenge.

CONS

  • Inflation of power-ups slows down your upgrade progression.
  • Basic game takes a LONG time to reach challenging levels with AI opponents.

VERDICT

Take the time to check out Asteroids GUNNER for yourself and see whether it compares to the games that took their inspiration from the original Asteroids.


  • Full Review
  • App Store Info
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The original Asteroids by Atari is easily recognizable as one of the forefathers  of Arcade gaming that has eventually led to common genres like the twin-stick shooter. The fact that the iOS ended up with such amazing titles like Space Miner: Space Ore Bust and Meteor Blitz by restoring some of the classic formula only goes to show how far-reaching the concept came to be. With Atari celebrating Asteroids 30th year out of the Arcades (the Atari 2600 first saw the game in 1981), it's only appropriate to have an updated version for 2011, and as such we now have the Fluik Entertainment developed Asteroids GUNNER.

Far be it for me to jump to a conclusion like this right away, but as a free title there's no reason not to grab the title right away, though some would ask where the catch is. GUNNER does pack in some In App Purchases, though aside from unlocking additional 'sectors', ships or super upgrades, you can get along just fine with the basic currency earned through play.

Each 'wave' of a sector consists of a bunch of asteroids (of course) and the occasional enemy or more with the aim of the game being to destroy and mine as much as possible as quickly as possible. This earns you cash which can be spent on upgrading your ship by unlocking power-up slots, improving the duration and effect of said power-ups or repairing your ship to survive the next wave intact for bonus points.

Sadly the game stalls at this point and while clearing out screen after screen of asteroids has an appeal of its own, money needs to be spent to unlock modes of play that add a real sense of challenge (such as 'Rush' or 'Kamikaze') and even then the game lacks variety in gameplay, making it easy to put down again. The fact that power-ups also inflate in value over time only makes the grind more apparent.

Despite its pretty shell and perfectly reasonable entry cost, Asteroids GUNNER is more of a time-waster than an addictive coin-pumping game like the original. Take the time to try it out and maybe a purchase or two will give you what you want, just don't expect a game on par with the titles it seeks to emulate.

Screenshots

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