As a gamer I take a lot of joy in perusing the Android Market for new ways to feed my hunger for interactive media, and sometimes I come across a game with a premise so interesting it shoots a grin across my face and pulls my thumb to the install button. My latest encounter of this sort was with Replica Island, developed by the appropriately named Team Replica.
Replica Island is essentially an old school platformer, although instead of making it to the end of a level, the object is to collect three red crystals scattered across the stage. My favorite part, however, is the fact that you play as the Android mascot in his hunt for “The Source,” an artifact hunted by two opposing factions with absolutely no love for one another.
- 2D platforming, collect the three red crystals to finish the level.
- 40 levels, referred to as “Memory Sequences.”
- The Android’s attacks are limited to a ground pound and a robot control orb, thus placing emphasis on exploration and avoiding combat.
- Jump and attack buttons are on screen; movement, by default, is bound to the trackball/D Pad. However, the options menu allows you to map abilities to your keyboard if you have one.
Replica Island carries the quality and quantity of a paid app, for free. With its simple control scheme, amount of content and interesting level design, Replica Island can, and should, be enjoyed by both hardcore and casual gamers alike. If you have an interest in the platformer genre, and enough money in your account to afford a game that costs absolutely nothing, you’d be pretty crazy not to give it a try.
- Runs flawlessly, even on the G1.
- Excellent level design. I never felt as if I was running in circles or that the developers were phoning it in, even during the later levels.
- There’s actually a tale to be told. Team Replica could have easily passed this along as a standard mute platformer, but the fact that they took the time to integrate the story, write the dialogue and even add a cutscene or two shows a refreshing amount of dedication to their product.
- Absolutely free, absolutely ad free, and absolutely fat free.
- Moving with the trackball can be cumbersome, as The Android I seem to frequently overshoot my target, but when mind controlling a robot he moves at a snail’s pace. Binding movement to the keyboard is just as difficult as they keys are too small to be useful for this type of thing.
- It’s quiet, too quiet. Sure there are sound effects, but the levels lack any type of music or ambience. It’s not a big issue, but a nice soundtrack would really make the levels come to life.
- You may develop a hatred of birds. During one stage I was obliterated by the same bird so many times I had to run out and buy a baked chicken just to reassure myself that I was still the dominant species.
Special Notes: Sends anonymous user data, such as deaths and completion times, back to the developer. All of the info is compiled at http://replicaisland.net/index.php?view=en/player_metrics.php
Note: This review was submitted by Ryan Larrabee as part of our app review contest.