Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
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AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! (Force = Mass x Acceleration), heretofore referred to as F=ma for both brevity and the writer’s sanity, is a game about BASE jumping. Well, it’s a game about BASE jumping in a seemingly dystopian and/or sarcastic sci-fi future Boston where buildings are floating in mid-air. The goal is not just to jump from a high point and land safely, but to also fly and stay near buildings, referred to as kisses and hugs respectively, to rack up massive points in order to try and get a 5-star rating at the end of the level. As well, there are supporters that can be given a thumbs up, protestors that can be flipped off, and buildings that can be graffiti’d – all for extra points, of course. Of course, without landing safely on the end platform with the help of a parachute, all those points earned will mean nothing.
The experience of F=ma is like few else in gaming (besides the other games in the AaaA series for PC) but having it in a handheld device makes it feel more immersive and intense. Tilting back as far as possible to land on a platform is just exciting. Swerving in-between tight structures, trying to keep from hitting them head-on while trying to get 5 stars – it’s just kind of crazy and breathtaking. I probably would stay away if I had motion sickness, though.
Good news, the tilt controls do a great job! Thanks in part to the central indicator of how far the player is tilting in a direction, using this control system becomes easy, and that circle actually helps with guiding the player as they fall to the earth. Is it completely accurate? No, but the sensitivity can be changed, and the auto-tilt calibration does its job.
The game is non-linear, giving out teeth for performance on levels, that are then used to unlock other levels, and any level that is adjacent to a previously-unlocked level can be unlocked. Teeth can’t be bought nor do they need to be, they just serve solely as a progression mechanism, and levels can be replayed for more teeth. The game supports Game Center, but only on certain levels because of Game Center’s limits on the number of leaderboards a game can have – this is similar to Snuggle Truck’s workaround, which is only appropriate considering that developer, Owlchemy Labs, assisted on developing this version.
The humor of the game can’t be neglected – from the humorous level descriptions, non-sensical videos, sarcastic news reports that play at the level select screen, this game revels in its absurdity, which is only appropriate considering that it’s possible to flip off haters while falling from the sky. F=ma nails it in just about every aspect imaginable. Comical, addictive, and just all-around fun. Check this one out.