Developer: Muteki Corporation
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.0

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

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

photo3The app store seems to be inundated with endurance-challenging games featuring mechanically-equipped animals/characters looking to fly, float or burst long distances, challenging players to test their skills to see how long/far they can control their characters in a top-heavy endurance challenge genre. The latest is Super Jetpack Dragon IV: Village Burntopia, where players jump, dash, hover and burn their way through villages, walls and gates, while fueling their rage with hovering haunches of meat, foolishly left by simple-minded villagers asking for the ensuing skullduggery.

photo2Released shortly after 1983, the Dragon games have a long history, originally surfacing as Dragon 1, for the Atari 2600 console. Muteki Corp.’s latest effort is an attempt to breathe new fire into a forgotten/obscure game.

Jetpack Dragon is Goofus to Spyro’s Gallant and players control him to terrorize and wreak havoc on the village/villagers of Burntopia, located in Ancient China, as far/long as possible. Unlike many endurance-based games however, Jetpack Dragon incorporates several different elements into it’s game play in order for players to successfully progress in the game. Players use simple touch gestures to control Goofus their dragon to run, jump, hover and dash as far into the village as possible, while fueling the dragon’s bottomless pit of an appetite.

Jetpack Dragon IV features progressively difficult game play. The longer the dragon progresses through Burntopia, the faster he becomes, requiring players to use their quick reflexes to jump, hover and dash as far as possible, without running out of fuel or running into or off of the side of a cliff. Super Jetpack Dragon IV also features online leaderboards and awards.

The game’s graphics are well done and the soundtrack consists of a rock anthem which integrates nicely into the game’s debauchery. Villager’s cries and the “hoomphs” released by Jetpack Dragon as he launches into the air integrate nicely into the game’s library of quality sound effects.

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The game’s control scheme is simple: Players simply tap on the left portion of the screen to jump, left tap and hold to hover and tap on the right side of the screen to dash and burn through/over gates, walls, etc. The longer you last and hit consecutive items of a given type, the higher your multiplier goes, increasing your score. The game play screen offers no pause feature, so once you start, you’re committed.

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I enjoyed playing Super Jetpack Dragon IV, but the scenery never really changes and players could eventually become bored. Fortunately, controlling Jetpack Dragon requires a degree of strategy and multi-tasking, which players could find alluring enough to compensate for any of the game’s deficiencies. Also, villages and walls are frequently located next to cliffs which require you jump over them. Dashing so close to a cliff results in your dragon running into the side of the on-coming cliff, as there is not enough time to land and jump/hover the gap. That said, the game is FREE and the online leaderboards and awards do add to the game’s replay value.

The developers have also indicated that they are working on an update which will contain, among other things, a new collectible pick-up item and the addition of Jetpack Dragon’s arch enemy.

Overall, I suggest downloading Jetpack Dragon and giving it a try. If you enjoy endurance challenges, odds are you’ll appreciate the time and effort Muteki Corp. put into bringing the Dragon series back to life.

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