148Apps Network Post
Developer: Bravo Game Studios
Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPod touch 4G

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

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

One would think that volcanoes aren’t the kind of thing that you could escape once you’re thrown in them, but Volcano Escape seeks to prove me wrong. As described in my preview, is a hybrid of endless jumping games and dual stick shooters, where you control Colonel Bravo or one of his compatriots, who got chucked into a volcano, and are trying to delay their inevitable doom by jumping through a labyrinth of platforms and enemies, to get to as great a height as possible, while shooting anyone and anything that gets in your way. You can pick up powerups to jump higher (as well as lower), take a jetpack to fly upwards quickly and safely, and pick up new weapons like a grenade launcher and shotgun to help you on your way.

The game brings a lot of action to the endless jumping platformer that we haven’t seen much of – Doodle Jump lets you shoot enemies, but this game puts more of a focus on the action part of the game than others have done. It really does feel different than other games in the genre. The graphic style is very vibrant, too, and the game supports the Retina Display. You can unlock an additional 4 characters by completing tasks in-game like collecting 100 boxes total, or getting up to a height of 1500. No, there is no unit given, so call it whatever you want; perhaps this is a land of giants, so you’re getting up to 1500 miles! There’s also Game Center support integrated for both leaderboards and achievements, and you’ll see other players’ high scores as you ascend.

Volcano Escape often runs into trouble when you want to mix shooting, jumping and firing. On a console, this might work better because you could use something like the shoulder buttons on the controller to jump while firing, so it can often be awkward when you’re trying to navigate tricky sections with enemies right above you. It just feels awkward in a game where you’re trying to constantly ascend to escape a rising wave of lava to be forced to stand still to destroy enemies right above you. The walls are kind of tricky as well – it feels like sometimes that you can jump off of them, but other times you can’t, or you’re just on an edge of a platform jutting off of it, but the jumping physics can be tricky like this. As well, there’s one enemy that is on the wall that spits out other enemies, and it blends in with the wall so well that you may never realize it’s there until you realize you’ve lost health.

While Volcano Escape does have some control issues, this action-influenced vertical platformer will be appealing to gamers looking for something a bit different from other games in the genre.

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