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Assault Squadron iPhone Review
Review Score:

At first impression, Assault Squadron – a high intensity, visually stunning Amiga style Shoot ‘em up – seems to tick all the boxes. Once you get past the lush exterior however, the lack of substance leaves you wanting.

The campaign is fairly standard, aliens have attacked the Earth and you are called upon as a member of the Assault Squadron to fight off the hordes. It’s fairly short at six stages which can easily be done in at the very most an hour-although this isn’t a game breaker, re-playability is limited. The mix of top down and side scrolling stages are a very nice addition and goes a long way in giving the game a feeling of variety.

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Apart from anything else, the game is absolutely beautifully presented. From the sleek menus to the bridging cut scenes aesthetics can’t be faulted. The explosion of colour and vibrancy of the gameplay sets a precedent and puts some DS games to shame. The game runs at a whopping 60fps which handles the sheer volume of colour, enemies and orbs on the screen and helps the game run smooth, the orbs are emitted when an enemy is defeated and the orbs are then collected and used to upgrade the weapons on your vessel. Each stage ends with a retro boss battle that is a nice throwback to the games that have obviously influenced Assault Squadron.

There are three different ships to choose from and one unlockable through progress in the campaign, each one has a different effect on gameplay; the more nimble ships have less of an arsenal and the more heavily equipped vessels are more cumbersome. Your ship choice does add an element of strategy to the game which is a welcome edition.

t55p Assault Squadron iPhone Review

What really dogs this game and is apparent throughout - are the controls. The underlying lack of control and precision whilst manoeuvring through the tirades of bullets where a sharp control is necessary, really does mar the game. Two of the four control schemes can effectively be ruled out as a feasible options as the “Virtual Stick” and “Tilt” are so unresponsive it makes gameplay frustrating and exceptionally hard. The other two offer 1:1 touch and 1:2.5 but these are very clunky and one rogue touch will lead your vessel into danger.

Assault squadron has the potential to be great and a really fun game. I just think that if the developers had put as much effort into the controls and adding some more stages as they have on the aesthetics – Assault Squadron could have been great.

VN:F [1.9.6_1107]
Rating: 9.0/10 (2 votes cast)
Assault Squadron iPhone Review, 9.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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