Node.Hack Review

By , on March 28, 2012

  • Publisher: 4gency
  • Genre: Strategy
  • Released: 21 Mar, 2012
  • Size: 29.3 MB
  • Price: $1.99
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5


  • Pick-up-and-play simplicity; touch to move between nodes, stay still to hack, get out if you can.
  • Randomized levels keep players from exploiting the AI to survive.
  • Tense mix of risky plays and big rewards.


  • Visual design feels cluttered; mix of fonts, clean icons and background images don't quite mesh.
  • Random element to AI and level layout can be exhilarating, but also frustrating.


Node.Hack may be a simple tap and play style game that you'll pick up in a snap, but becoming a master hacker is far from easy and you'll need nerves of steel to survive its later stages.

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Simplicity and elegance are just as admirable in games as grandiose storylines, epic battles and gorgeous graphics, especially for mobile devices. Being able to jump in to a game, defy the stiff odds placed against you and get out is the sort of thing that Node.Hack by 4gency encourages, making it a great pickup for those who remember the tense atmosphere of games like Pac Man and their ilk.

Your job is to hack nodes by moving to (tapping) and sitting on them until the cash they represent has been unlocked. Once you reach the preset limit you'll need to escape and move on to bigger and more exciting grounds to test your 'hacking' prowess.

There's just a few obstacles to overcome: Firstly, each level is generated randomly - a grid-like pattern of nodes that you can easily move around with a tap, but you can never expect the same challenge twice. This is important because secondly, the game spawns enemies that randomly traverse the grid seeking you out as you stop to collect large sums of cash - thankfully you can also deploy weapons scattered around the grid, but their limited supply means you'll need to be careful in their use. Lastly, once you do happen to reach the cash limit, alarms will go off, enemies will start spawning in greater numbers and the grid will slowly dissolve, shrinking down and forcing you to exit - if you plan things out well you could pick up a node or two on the way out, but you'll be risking it all if you fail.

While not the prettiest game, Node.Hack's elegant pick-up-and-play style makes it exciting to play and quickly escalates the challenge, meaning you'll find yourself trying to overcome the odds again and again. The difficulty may put some off, but if you think you have nerves of steel then this game is something that will test their mettle.


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