Taking a closer look at mobile games
The underlying reason mobile games are so appealing to the millions and millions that download them via Apple's Appstore or Google's Playstore (which can be done with HTML5 as well) is that these games are accessed and stored all via their cell phone. These people literally carry their phones with them almost all day, EVERY day. That means there will be times when user sessions will need to be bite sized. For a game to be bite sized it usually needs to accessible, unless a developer can manage to put in mechanics that are fun enough to keep playing even though you're losing. Which is why it's on the list below.
- Presentation-Nowadays mobile games must look good, it can sink your ship if it doesn't.
- Gameplay-Interesting twist now that games have their inputs coming from phones
- Sound-Video games with sound are the best games
- Accessibility-Easy to get into? How good is your freemium?
Assaulter is an older game developed by CWA (China Wireless Arts) Games that when you look at it's trailer you instantly realize that if you're about to make happen what you just saw on the screen happen that you'll be in for a grand experience. This brings me to the first item on the list.
Assaulter looks every bit like an action shooter should look like. The art embodies that "retro" feel without feeling dated. The animations are smooth with lots of action, bullets, explosions and action. There are even boss fights where you can fight guys raining on you from helicopters and firefights on wave racers. That trailer is totally awesome.
This is where the game falters a bit. It's not that you can't have fun with the game, it's that the shooting is done automatically for you. It's still fun as it has a slide maneuver that is useful for getting yourself out of a pickle. It also have lots of equipment options with the 3 different characters specializing in different weapons.
The game has a good score of war like tunes that is fitting for an action shooter. The same goes for the sounds effects. The games production is as good as I've seen for mobile, especially since the game was released in October of 2011.
Assaulter's controls are easy enough. The only thing that I found myself having a little trouble with at first was the jump ability. Sliding is done smoothly and swiftly. While the shooting is pretty much automatic, it works, not really putting you in a position where you would go "Grr...if only they didn't do the shooting for me!" The freemium model here is full of time meters and grinding to continue, not the best freemium model.
While a number in no way determines how much fun you can have with a video game, it can however be used a gauge on how complete the experience felt when you finally reach that stopping point of your play session. Assaulter gets a lot of things right and you can still walk away with the overall experience being fun while only faltering slightly due to its "grind to advance" freemium model. All around good.
Assaulter can be downloaded for Android from the Google Playstore here.