Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 3GS
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Game Controls Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
In the far flung future, after a second ice age has wiped out humanity, only monkeys and insects have survived. As both evolve decidedly pirate-like qualities, they vie for the dominance of the planets seas. What might sound like a slightly more swashbuckling version of Planet of the Apes is actually the primate pirate premise of the game Powder Monkeys.
Powder Monkeys is a pirate themed RPG in which players will take control of their own pirate ship and take to the high seas in a quest to rid the surrounding islands of pesky insects. Players must sail their monkey pirate crew around the ocean, freeing islands from insect control. The game is split into several different portions: a world map where players sail their ship from island to island, ship to ship battles that take place when another ship is encountered on the sea, ship to island battles that take place when an island is being liberated, and side quests that incorporate elements of the other portions of the game.
Sailing around the world map is easy and there are lots of little treasures to plunder. While in the world map, players will also find enemy ships roaming the seas, if one of these ships touches the players ship, a ship to ship battle will commence. During battles, players load their cannons with bullets by tapping on a bullet type and then tapping on one of their cannons to load it and fire the bullet. Different bullets have different abilities like the firework bullet that is slow and does lots of damage or the umbrella bullet that will block all other bullet types. There are also special powers that can be used to turn the tide of battle. All of these are upgradable with booty plundered in battle or treasures found while exploring. Of course, varying amounts of in-game currency can be purchased via in-app purchases. The player's ship can also be upgraded using materials found and plundered.
Islands battles are much like the ship battles with the exceptions that they player has unlimited ammo and is trying to destroy cannon towers instead of ships. The side quests range from escort missions, to mazes, to battles and they are all unlocked at certain experience levels. As with most RPGs, players gain experience with most actions and as they reach new levels new abilities and tools are unlocked.
Powder Monkey is a well polished RPG that is fun to play, looks great, and doesn't get bogged down with complex battle systems or an incomprehensible plot. The gameplay is simple and the game looks great. It's also very easy to jump in for just a few minutes here and there, which makes it a great choice on mobile platforms. Players looking for a light RPG should consider this game.