WWII Alone is a worthy shooter

Posted: May 3, 2009 in Shooter

I don’t like tap-to-shoot games in general because I find little satisfaction in the ones I’ve tried until I came across WWII Alone. This crazy and addicting game caught me by surprise in terms of the fun and downright entertaining gameplay, and those that aspire to develop future tap-to-shoot games should look at WWII Alone and how its structured.

Set in WWII, you’re a lone soldier that must battle through six missions filled with a barrage of enemy troops and attack vehicles with three boss battles mixed in. The objective of the game is to clear the missions and earn money to upgrade weapons with WWII Alone’s perk system. Visually, the devs have created an effective layout that allows the player to take full advantage of the chaos that occurs in the game. The attention to detail in the structures and attack vehicles is very obvious, and the sound effects are just enough to create the right mood. I actually wince when my soldier gets hit by weapons fire because visually he snaps back when that happens and makes a grunting sound.

The missions are aptly named Dawn of Battle, Tiger in Town, Moles, U at Bay, Night Fever, and Secret Weapon and each delivers a unique battle environment. Dawn of Battle is your first mission and is unlocked by default, and each subsequent level unlocks as you progress through the game. Two modes are available in WWII Alone: Normal and Hardcore with Normal unlocked by default. You must complete all 6 missions in Normal mode which include defeating the final boss before Hardcore is unlocked. In Hardcore mode, the action is significantly escalated and feels like a survival mode as you face barrage after barrage of attacks. Also, your best time and last time are recorded for each mission.

Back to the perk system for a moment, a monetary scale is included in WWII Alone that can be accessed with its on special Perk button. Available perks include additional grenades, life, machine gun and rifle damage, and shooting distance. I suggest you experiment a bit before deciding which perk is most appropriate for each level. The game keeps a running tally of the money earned even in failed missions so you will gradually add to your total. Part of the replayability with WWII Alone is that you can go back to previously completed missions and earn additional money there as well as improving your time. During gameplay, additional grenades can be acquired by shooting specific targets (e.g. ducks) and health power ups by hitting supply vessels. Also, weapons such as machine guns and rifles can be picked up by rolling over them when they appear.

In terms of controls, everything is done by touch, and they’re very responsive. Simply tap the target to shoot, and tap along the bottom of the screen to move your soldier left to right. You can also dodge bullets, grenades and sledge hammers by rolling along the ground which comes in handy when a military plane is carpet bombing from above. Everything in the screen can be destroyed so buildings, planes and submarines are fair game. The gameplay screen keeps a tally of your money earned during the mission as well as a healthbar to monitor your soldier’s strength. Weapons can also be rotated by tapping an icon in the upper left-hand corner during the game.

WWII Alone is done well because the devs paid attention to the details. While the game could use additional levels, the graphics are done well, and the perk system offers a good incentive for replayability. The game is entertaining in both short and more engaging gaming sessions, and you’ll find it offers addictive gameplay. It’s definitely one that I hope rises above the noise of the iTunes store.

Check out my impressions on TouchArcade at http://toucharcade.com/2009/05/04/wwii-alone-a-surprisingly-fun-099-tap-shooter/

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