Fireball SE Review
- Fine movement controls with slow-mo options for even more finesse.
- Various arenas for 'Countdown' and 'Survival' let players customize their challenge.\
- Combo system and additional 'bombs' encourages risk vs. reward strategies.
- Extends the 'Pacifism' style of gameplay, but still quickly feels repetitive; Orange/blue visuals don't help with the monotonous atmosphere.
Fireball SE's passive-aggressive style of gameplay is executed with near perfection thanks to its smooth and finessed controls and various methods of destruction.
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Back when everyone and their best friend were playing Geometry Wars, I found the 'Pacifism' mode of Retro Evolved 2 to be my absolute favorite. All of the over-the-top twitch-based shooting was shelved to make way for skillful piloting as you balanced along the fine line of risk vs. reward. Fireball SE by Luke Schneider takes a crack at the same formula, albeit with some fresh twists that will have you risking more than you can handle.
Players can choose between either a fixed or floating virtual stick to move their tiny fireball - that's about it when it comes to the controls, although precision with which you can dictate your movement is incredible and something that immediately reminded me of iOS classics like Tilt to Live. This is also apt as the game's enemies are nominally small, fast and ready to swarm you, but you have two tools at your disposal to take care of them permanently. If things get hectic you can even double-touch the screen to enable a temporary slow-down mode that's smooth and exhilarating to use when you're completely cornered.
Bombs randomly scatter themselves around the level and players can either dive right in to them to cause an explosion, killing anything near you, or better still, swing nearby a bomb, lighting its fuse and catching even more enemies as they follow in your wake. Should you catch another bomb in the explosion, it too will explode and if you manage to catch 50 or more enemies in a chain you'll spawn a super-bomb that can be saved for even bigger combos.
There are other larger, slower enemies and several weapons to make use of (beware of the black-hole as you can also be sucked in), but it's the variety of ways in which the basic game is presented that makes this a great pickup for fans of skill-based Arcade titles. They break up in to 'Waves' - a mode that challenges you to reach a specific target before upping the challenge; 'Countdown' - survive as long as you can for 3 minutes, racking up large combos in one of 5 customized arenas; and lastly 'Survival' where the only thing that counts is how long you stay alive (also sporting 5 arenas with a unique mix of enemies and challenges).
Fireball SE does a great job of adding complexity to an otherwise simple premise and for those after something fast, furious and fun, it will fit the bill perfectly.
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Check out what reviewers are saying about Fireball SE:
"The controls here are absolutely spot on and among the best virtual joystick controls players are liable to find in any iOS game." (4 out of 5) - 148Apps
"Fireball SE has the energy and appeal to last for quite some time." (8 out of 10) - PocketGamer
"It's sort of like Tilt to Live without the tilt, but let's put comparisons aside—this game is seriously fun on its own." (4 out of 5) - TouchArcade
"It's smart, polished, and above all, immediate." - Eurogamer
Smooth Controls, Explosive Action, and Thrilling Escapes!
Fireball: Special Edition is an addictive and challenging, movement-oriented arcade game. Dodge swarms of enemies and lead them to their destruction across 3 modes and 2 difficulty levels.
* Use Meltdown mode to slow down the action and escape from certain death.
* In Waves mode, play through 8 consecutive waves of increasing size and speed.
* In Countdown mode, play 5 unique stages of 3 minutes each and try to score as high as you can with massive combos.
* In Survival mode, play 5 more stages where the goal is to stay alive as long as possible.
Along with full Game Center support, Fireball SE includes local high scores as well as 19 achievements to strive for.
What's New in Version 1.07Upload gameplay videos directly from the game with Kamcord.
Force screen to stay active when playing with tilt controls.
Updated game links to be more direct where possible.