Version Reviewed: 1.1
Graphics / Sound [rating:5/5]
Game Controls [rating:5/5]
Re-use / Replay Value [rating:5/5]
Pinball! Since I downloaded this game months ago, I have still never deleted it, and it is always there if I have time to kill. It's a keeper.
Wild West Pinball first appeared for free after enjoying quite a bit of time as a paid app at $2.99. It is somewhat unique because it offers a more authentic pinball experience then what was available at the time. It has great animation with 3D panning which has the ball becoming central to the game, your view follows it around the table. At times zooming to where the action is... more on these goodies in a few...
The developers then lowered the price to 'free' in preparation of their new release The Deep. This new game has been submitted to Apple and as of July 16th has been waiting approval. This clever move however made WildWest skyrocket to the top of the Free charts.
Over 30K people have commented on the app and for some reason it has maintained an average vote of 3 stars. I can not really understand why. I have read the reviews, and many of the things mentioned have been improved and/or added to. One of the main complaints since I bought the game was that there wasn't a highscore area online. Well now there is, so you can thrash it out with all the other pinball fans (me!!).
Why this game is so good is because I really feel that it is brining pinball to the gaming world how it should be. The iPhone / iPod touch platform seems to be the perfect platform for this style of game. I play(ed) pinball in real life and have enjoyed countless hours trying to become a pinball wizard. When I play pinball on my PC / Mac it really is never the same, it is awkward and clumsy no matter how much I suspend disbelief. The iPhone is such a great new design for this style of game with the touch controls and accelerometer... I hope more pinball games companies get in the boat on this one.
The way WildWest is set up, I feel like I am actually playing pinball on my own private table. It has flippers that you can click but really, you could click anywhere on the right hand or left hand side to get them to work which is great. There is also plenty for the ball to hit, and the movement and action of the ball mimics how it would react in the real table. This is achieved through the GFX engine with smooth rendering. It runs at 40fps.
Sound is authentic pinball experience, and I would recommend playing it at high volume. There were times when I was pretty excited playing it and accidently covered the little iPhone speakers so keeping it loud is a good idea.
Bad points about this game, would only be that initially when I played it, it did take some getting used to the movement of the table as you play in order to follow the ball. After some game play I grew to love it a lot, because you get far clearer and closer shots of where the ball is and the score you are racking up. But it did take me a bit of time to get used to it. I kind of would like to see that as an option, so I can play it as a stagnant table as well if I choose to.
Overall, this game is hot, it was hot when I first got it and it has only gotten better. At the free price point, I can see no reason not to try it, it's slick, smooth, and most of all fun. Pinball I love you~