Jessica's Appinion 'Warpspeed & CurveBot'
Warpspeed is a game with an ambitious concept that outshines the finished product. The game takes place in the future where traveling at warp speed is a feasible option to get to your destination. You are the pilot of your ship and you must navigate through tunnels in the fastest time possible without crashing. Your iPhone is the steering wheel in this insanely fast race and you rotate left and right to navigate your ship. Tapping right accelerates your ship and tapping left hits the brakes. There are tons of maps to beat and even the option of designing your own track. The tunnels are narrow and there are all sorts of bends and turns to keep you on your toes. You are surrounded by lights to help guide you to the end of the race. The graphics kind of remind me of Space Mountain but not nearly as thrilling.
Because you are traveling at a very fast pace, it is difficult to fully control the direction of your ship. The sensitive tilt controls of the game do not give the user a good chance of making it out alive. You have to move left and right with such precision that it is nearly impossible to get to the end undamaged. There is very little control at the “warp speed” pace which can be frustrating and counterproductive to completing levels. Bumping into the channels decreases your ship’s health but it’s insanely difficult to make it through a track unscathed. Despite the lack of control of your ship, the game definitely has some appeal. You get a cute little cockpit which makes your pilot status all the more official. The graphics are cool and the steering simulation is entertaining and the soundtrack could use some serious Daft Punk. There is something very exciting about traveling at warp speed even if you are constantly bumping into walls. I commend the developers for such a bold move but the idea wasn’t successfully executed.
Unfortunately, Warpspeed is a game that should have actually been released in the future, when the technology could match the concept.
CurveBot isn’t groundbreaking but it is amusing enough to keep your iPhone glued to your hand. The concept is simple enough: cut out a pre-determined percentage of the board to beat the level and free your fiery friends. You touch the arrows to move around the board and you tap both arrows to start a cut. You must slice with precision because intersecting with a previously cut line will send you back to the start. There are of course more difficult levels with different challenges to overcome. You must free your friends from the level but they can’t be split up if there is more than one (Obvi, I would never go anywhere without my bestie.) As a result, you are not allowed to cut a line between them. There are also drones or “frenemies” as I like to call them that will try to intercept your line before you can complete a cut. Like most rivals, they can be bought off with money. If you cut out a piece of the ground that contains a coin you can potentially freeze or trap them and peacefully complete your mission.
The controls move with ease and are extremely accurate. This makes cutting tight spaces very manageable. You can make very precise movements to avoid hitting drones and lines you have already cut. You have a tail that grows after you complete a cut that serves as a point-indicator. Unfortunately, you can lose all your hard-earned points by crashing into opposition. CurveBot reminds me of the classic game Snake in this respect but obviously with a few variations. The smooth controls give you complete freedom to slice whatever shapes you please. The game even gives you positive reinforcement after significant cuts, such as “marvelous munch,” or ‘lovely lop.” This feature is a plus for people like myself who enjoy being complimented on even the most useless of talents. You can also play back your every cut after you have completed the level to admire your awesomeness.
The game takes a long time to get challenging so the hardcore gamers might lose interest before the game really picks up. You can cut very small pieces with no consequence which makes the game less exciting. I would suggest a limitation on the amount of cuts you can use to really force strategic moves. If you make it far enough, the game does become quite competitive and is definitely worth waiting for. The concept of this game is respectable but it’s the precision of the controls that make this game such a success.
CurveBot is truly a cut above the rest!
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