Oh goody, it's twinstick time again.
Today's protagonist is a brave little robot whose home has been invaded by a horde of ravening mechanical creatures. Rather than flee, it's up to our plucky pal to lock, load and circle strafe like crazy in order to kill them all. Once a stage is cleared, you'll be whisked back to a workshop to repair your armour, lick your wounds and check your copious number of unlockable Game Centre achievements. Rinse and repeat.
The controls are tight, the boost mechanic is a great way of escaping tight scrapes and the experience is as a lot more engaging than many apps I could mention. It's as edifying as you'd expect from a twinistick shooter about robots. Which frankly aren't in short supply.
Unfortunately it turns out that there are only two levels. Let me explain. The action takes place in a single arena that simply needs to be cleared of a horde of enemies to proceed. New stronger enemies join the party every other level or so - and every ten stages, a big armadillo-like boss trundles out and gives you a hectic battle in his own smaller pit.
And then it's back to the old familiar arena for another nine missions.
This simply wouldn't have been enough by itself- and I was close to merrily discarding it out of sight and out of mind after a few minutes. However, like most of the best mech games, RobotNGun allows you to trick out your plucky machine with a massive array of upgradeable weapons and hardware.
Sniper rifles, shotguns, rocket launchers and laser cannons (amongst others) can all be purchased and upgraded with credits gleaned from slain enemies. Abilities can also be improved, including better armour, heat distribution and boost duration.
Trust me, saving up for new gear makes the experience much more addictive than it has any right to be. You'll need every advantage you can muster in later levels. The huge number of achievements are also a compulsive draw that make besting the 150 stages an exercise in self-discipline.
Presentation-wise, RobotNGun is functional without being particularly pretty. I personally like the visuals as they remind me of old-school PC games, but it doesn't stand out. For the price, it's really not a problem.
On the iPad, however, it's a different story. The HD version looks great and handles well on the big screen, and for the tiny price difference, I'd heartily suggest upgrading to the beefier version.
- Solid gunplay with tight controls
- Addictive unlockable arsenal and achievements
- Looks great on the iPad
- More than two level backdrops would have been nice
- Come on.
Summary: RobotNGun is a capable twinstick shooter with a great selection of weapons. More levels and arenas would have made it an essential purchase, but for now, it's a perfect time sink for quick toilet breaks or the morning commute.
Developer: Crazy Carpenter
- Standard Version compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.2 or later.
- HD Version compatible with iPad. Requires iOS 3.2 or later.