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Sea Stars Review

By , on November 23, 2011

Sea Stars
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • The upgrades and missions keep you playing.
  • You get the hang of the controls in no time.


  • A little too focused on the store.


While Tiny Wings set its course on land, Sea Stars takes to the water with a well made fun gaming experience.

  • Full Review
  • App Store Info

If you were to believe a certain catchy Disney song from the early 90s, you would think that things are much better under the sea. After a few minutes playing Sea Stars, you'd definitely be giving the argument some thought. There's something about the colors, the gliding mechanics and the collectables and upgrades that make this game just a joy to play.

Control as well as the style of game is similar to Tiny Wings. Pressing down on the screen gives you weight, plunging you to the bottom of the ocean, while lifting will send you soaring up, eventually diving out of the water. During this weaving to and fro, you'll be collecting coins, and avoiding deadly jellyfish and missile crabs. The main goal is to survive but the game is full of tiny goals, or missions if you will, that reward you with coins and experience upon completion. These range from meeting all the sea buddies that carry you along with a greater sense of risk and reward, to jumping enough times to engage rainbow bird mode, to just traveling a certain distance or collecting a certain amount of coins.

Coins are the currency for the shop. Not only can helpful power-ups such as shields and speed boosts be purchased, but bonuses in game can be upgraded, new characters can be unlocked, and even missions can be tagged out for another if one is giving you particular trouble. Now the game does tend to focus a little too much on the shop. Granted its unlocks are what helps to prolong play, and the extra money the developers will make from people purchasing coins to unlock everything they want to is fair enough, but its constant intrusion mars the joy of the gameplay somewhat.

Sea Stars is full of color, charm and enjoyable music. The game opens up quickly and before long you'll be defeating your high scores, ticking off missions and saving up coins for the next unlock. Sea Stars takes an established game type, and makes it its own. Great for short bursts of gameplay or those who like having goals to work towards.


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helenegish 3 years, 12 months ago

Here are the pets that have special abilities (this is not all of them -- there are seven more)
Alex the Turtle -- a handy pet that never leaves the swimmer's side and eats every sea-urchin on its path!
Kayla the Unicorn -- I don't know what a unicorn is doing in the ocean... but Kayla is cool because she stays behind the swimmer and collects clamshells. Her downside is that, as soon as she had collected a clamshell, she disappears for about half a minute. This means that she misses some clamshells. (Hotheads replied to my query in this regard by saying that different pets do their jobs to varying degrees.)
Matteo and Butterbean the Hippos -- who eat rocket crabs. I find these two particularly useless during rocket-crab attacks because the crabs often come several at a time; whereas Matteo and Butterbean both eat one single rocket crab and disappear for a while. I have not yet been able to determine whether one of the two is better than the other at catching rocket crabs.
Sagan the Devil Fish -- a particularly ugly pet that melts ice cubes. Like Alex the Turtle, Sagan does not leave your side. The ugliness of this particular pet, as well as the relative ease of avoiding floating ice cubes/glaciers, make me avoid using this pet.
Baby Blue -- Baby Blue looks like a tiny version of Storval. His job is to attract Storval. If you have BB along, Storval will be behind every Sea Star.
Alexa the Sea Star -- a little sea star that swims with the swimstar and causes more sea buddies to show up in each round. . . if I could equip two pets at the same time, I would use Alexa together with...
Desmond the Frog -- helps collect sea stars. Much as Kayla helps to collect clamshells, Desmond will not let you go past a swim-buddy-star without catching it. He never leaves your side.
Liam the Eagle -- As Baby Blue is to Storval, so Liam to Molt. When you swim with Liam, every sea buddy star you catch on the way will be Molt.
Sophie the Pig -- Stays at your side and collects missed coins and multiplies them by 2. If you already have Niji, you may as well not take Sophie along because it will do nothing to increase your points.
Ava the Parrot -- If she is along, your sequence of rainbow jumps will start at yellow -- red and orange automatically present. This means that you need only five rainbow jumps to get the rainbow birds. This is useful for the rainbow bird missions, although I would still recommend buying out the "call in the rainbow birds twelve times" because you still need several rounds to do it.
Kieran the Dragon -- "Clears all dangers every few seconds". Actually what Kieran does is to clear ALL DANGERS (as advertised); and disappear for a while. I have not yet figured out the interval, but it is more than a few seconds between. It is very surprising to get set for avoiding the dangers, when they suddenly disappear and you can keep swimming.
Kellen the Conch -- a pet that prevents rocket crabs from coming! In a round with Kellen, you may see about as many rocket crabs as you can count on one hand.
Clip -- a tiny crab (icon) that attracts Dr. Scuttles. In a round with Clip, every sea star will contain Dr. Scuttles.