Developer: Les Bird
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad Mini Retina

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★☆☆
Playtime: Rating: ★★★☆☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆

Levitar 2 probably translates from an alien language in to English as “I died again, [expletives deleted]!…2.” It is not an easy game, and it’s one only for the patient.

Levitar2-7Players control a small green spaceship in a vector environment. This ship can thrust into the air and fire at enemies, which are mostly stationary. The goal is to complete some objective like destroying all the enemies, returning an orb to the landing pad, or some mixture of objectives. Now, the game is regulated by fuel: thrusting expends it, and crashing costs 1000 fuel. There are fuel pads to get more, but considering how difficult it is to move about, well, good luck getting it without crashing! Irony is crashing into the fuel pad.

The game requires a lot of practice to do well. Managing to move the ship around in a way that doesn’t end up crashing it when it hits a wall or the ground takes a lot of practice, and the realization that slow-and-infrequent thrusts are the way to go. It can be very brutal up until that point. It’s still quite the brutal game, it’s just a more comfortable brutality once it’s recognized how the game works. Success does wind up feeling quite rewarding when it comes.

Levitar2-4The game supports MFi gamepads along with iCade controllers, and I highly recommend playing with one. It’s much easier to make the precise movements necessary to do well with physical buttons than with the tilt controls that are used otherwise. Why there’s no option to use virtual buttons of some sort is baffling.

Also baffling is the credits system. These are all earned in the context of one session, and seemingly even the IAP works for one round of play, so buying any upgrades at all is very difficult. It could be an error, or just a poorly-implemented system: either way, something needs to be fixed – either making the credits persistent between games or lowering costs by a lot. Upgrades are persistent if one can manage to earn enough credits to buy one.

Levitar 2 is a game only for the patient, but those willing to take on its challenge might find it quite rewarding. But seriously, be patient and don’t be afraid to try, try again.


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