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Developer: Namco Networks America Inc.

Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 3GS

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★½
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

On the wide spectrum of physics-based iOS games, The Mooniacs sits somewhere between Angry Birds and Peggle. The game consists of launching the Mooniac characters — who have crash landed and become lost — and ricocheting, bouncing, sliding and trampolining them through each stage to collect the cutesy floating in-game currency called JujuBees.

Each level is built vertically and the Mooniacs start at the bottom of the screen in a bubble. By repositioning the bubble and pulling the character down, aiming and releasing, players slingshot the characters up and through the levels. One of the best features of this game is how each of the Mooniacs react differently to the environment and the obstacles in each stage. They each have unique physical properties, so some of them are light and bouncy, while others are heavy and sticky.

Players have one chance to line up the perfect shot and collect as many JujuBees as they can. If they are unable to collect the required number of JujuBees, the level resets and they can try again until they have collected enough to progress to the next stage. The more JujuBees collected in each level, the higher the players score and the better their rating on each level. JujuBees can be used to purchase little extras in the game such as alternate endings and the like. The developer has also hinted that new game content will be unlocked as the number of cumulative JujuBees collected by everyone playing the game mounts to new levels. This add some extra, meta-level incentive to replay levels until every last JujuBee is collected.

The physics of this game are silky smooth, and the difference in how each Mooniac reacts in the levels keeps the game interesting at the point when other physics games might start get boring. Adding on this strength, there are many levels in which several of the Mooniacs must interact with each other in new ways to grab more JujuBees. These interactions bring a welcome bit of puzzling to the experience and the game is all the more fun for it.

Mooniacs is a great physics game with lots of polish. It’s simple enough to pick up and enjoy for a few short moments yet compelling enough to hold up to extended play. The game’s design is fun and whimsical which only further adds to its charm and appeal. It’s a breath of fresh air in what can sometimes be a very stale genre of iOS gaming.

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