Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5
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Vegetables are more than just a good source of nutrition, they're also quite nifty in a fight. Or at least that's what Chillingo's new title Grow Away! has taught me.
The idea is simple: a horde of hungry monsters are steadily approaching the vegetables' homeland and it's down to the player to repel them before it's too late. This is done through the wonders of catapults and the hard skins of many types of veggie.
There's a catapult at the bottom of each level and players must use their finger to pull back on it and release, hopefully taking out a monster along the way. It's a very simple idea and, as all good ideas should, Grow Away! builds upon this adding new elements that keep players interested. At its most basic, gameplay is quite reminiscent of Monster Burner as it's possible to bounce off the walls in Grow Away!. The difference here is that only certain types of vegetable can take out more than one monster at a time.
In the early stages, one tomato (a fruit rather than vegetable, admittedly) easily takes out one monster. Soon enough, bigger challenges arise. Snails that take a couple of hits to defeat, and speed up rapidly after being injured, emerge. Shielded creatures and huge lumbering monsters require all the more hits. There's also the prospect of boss battles at the end of each world (4 in all), which prove an even greater threat. While the barricades for the vegetables might be strong, it quickly falls under fearsome competition.
Fortunately, players have more than just tomatoes to help them. Special vegetables such as pumpkins and chillis even up the fight. Pumpkins can inflict damage on a number of monsters at once, while chillis emit a form of fire breathing attack. Power-ups can also be purchased, which balance out the fight further unleashing area effect damage and disruption.
The game mechanics tie together neatly so Grow Away! proves to be excellent fun. Levels gradually work their way up in terms of difficulty, ensuring that players never feel too out of depth or patronised. Grow Away! is near guaranteed to offer hours of vegetable flinging fun.