Developer: OrangePixel
Price: $1.99
Version Review: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★½
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

It’s a shame that a real-life alien invasion will probably never go down like the scenario presented in Groundskeeper2 by OrangePixel. In reality, the human race will likely be overwhelmed by Martian technology, and that’ll be the end of us. But in Groundskeeper 2, a single warrior saves the day by adapting and growing as she fights the alien onslaught. Oh, if only fending off a planetary invasion could be so easy.

No sense in worrying about it, though. Best to enjoy Groundskeeper2 for what it is: an action/shooting game that’s out of this world (cough).

groundskeeper_05Groundskeeper2 stars a purple-haired gunslinger who’s the only defense against wave after wave of alien hordes. Her sarcastic scientist pal lends a hand by providing weapon upgrades and encouragement laced heavily with sarcasm. The game’s action takes place across several levels that are linked by portals. Aliens pour into each level. When they’re dispatched, they drop “bits and bobs” that can be collected for weapon development.

Weapons and other power-ups appear as the player plows through the enemy hordes. Grabbing them is the key to survival since they grant bonuses like temporary invincibility, more powerful ammo, and screen-clearing bombs. Bits and bobs are also used to unlock portals to higher levels, and higher levels yield harder enemies. But players aren’t meant to succeed at Groundskeeper2 in one shot. When the player inevitably falls to the warty, interstellar masses, they get to keep the upgrades they’ve earned up to that point. So earlier levels become much easier, and each playthrough results in more progress.

It’s easy to assume Groundskeeper2 becomes repetitive with multiple playthroughs, but that’s not the case. From the word “Go,” the player becomes immersed in shooting and collecting power-ups. Besides, the action ramps up so quickly that there’s simply no time to be bored.

groundskeeper_02Groundskeeper2‘s controls can benefit from a small touch-up, however. Though players can change the positioning of the on-screen buttons, there’s no option for floating controls. It’s pretty easy for the player’s thumbs to slip off the buttons as a consequence. The worst thing anyone can do during an alien invasion is cease shooting.

But with its simple premise, sense of progression, and the pure satisfaction that comes with zapping waves of invaders, Groundskeeper2 has a lot to offer action fans. Especially action fans that hate alien scum.


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