Every so often we get told to visit this app, download this app, review this one and from time to time, we tend to find a diamond in the rough. Unfortunately, this app is firmly in the rough.
I tend to be one of those people that will download any and every game I can if it’s free and play with it until my brain cells die of repetitiveness. Even if I don’t like a game, I’ll tend to stick it out just so I can say I’ve completed but unfortunately, this is just one of those games I had to walk away from. Today, we’re going to be looking at Sonic Boom.
No menu, no instructions, what?!
When I usually open up an app with my fingers primed to tap, drag and swipe, I usually expect to be greeted by a menu. Even a simple one would do for most games yet with Sonic Boom, you’re thrown straight into the game which quite took me by surprise on my first opening.
So I thought, “Oh, I’ll probably have to press some icon to get the pause menu up and see what I have to do to play”. How wrong I was. No matter what I did or what I pressed, I couldn’t find a pause menu (let alone an actual menu at all) so not only was I thrown straight into a game, I had no idea how to play the game itself, which led to a frenzy of tapping and swiping until I got the gist of things.
It took me about 20 minutes before I realised how I could actually move the plane I was controlling myself and by that time, I was unfortunately at my wits end with the game. I decided to effectively kamikaze my plane in the hope that there would be some sort of menu that I could access and that not having one on start-up was merely a flaw. However, I was greeted with a simple ‘YOU LOSE’ and just a ‘Play’ and ‘Exit’ button. I tapped the exit button assuming, it would end my nightmare, and it did. Just not in the way I expected. It booted me back to my app selection screen
When it comes to first impressions, this game simply scores a 1/10, with the one only coming for effort. How can you expect people to want to play a game that they cannot pause and one that they cannot comprehend how to play until they have furiously tapped and swiped all over the place? This app’s welcome could do with a massive overhaul. A menu and instructions on how to play are a minimum must for Sonic Boom. I was just totally confused.
Maybe there isn’t a menu, but the visuals are good, right?
Wrong. I can appreciate that not every developer knows how to stick in and make top notch high quality graphics for their application, but you could at least try. Honestly, the graphical elements in this game look like a clip art picture that has just been plonked into the game. The only fun visual effect I found in this game was the ‘fireball’ that filled half the screen after I blew up what I assume to be a balloon. However, even that just grated on me.
The bombs that appeared from time to time just made things even worse. I could see the edges around the image quite clearly, the balloons were a terrible shade of rainbow and when hit with the first missile, a terrible attempt at flames. I could go on when it comes to visual elements, inside the actual game, but my main gripe is with the ‘menu’ that appears after you die.
Remember I said you were greeted with a ‘YOU LOSE’? Well, it’s not such a pleasant greeting when the text is a flaming text font seemingly taken from an online generator. The font on the ‘Play’ and ‘Exit’ were not much better either and really, none of the elements in this game tie in with one another.
The only graphically redeeming feature about this game is the sky in the background which in my opinion, actually looks quite good considering the rest of the elements in this game, if not repetitive.
Sadly again, I can’t say much more about this other than It really needs to be improved. Pick a theme, pick a few colours and a font and stick with it. Do not mix and match to your own pleasure. The fire animation needs to fill less of the screen and shift off the screen quicker. The left-over ‘fire’ after the killshot is just as bad. I’m sorry, but the graphics are just way below par in this game.
Okay, so the menu isn’t there, neither are the graphics, surely the gameplay is adequate?
Sadly again, I feel that the gameplay is like the rest of the application, one big let-down. When we review an application here at TechNewsCentral, we get a fair few people to use the app in question so that we get an all-round review from different people. Of the six people that we showed this application to, all six said that they would put down the game and delete it after a few minutes. There are no levels to the game, there is no leader board, no proper scoring system, there is just nothing to engage the user to actually want to play the game.
There’s not really much for us to say here, because there isn’t much in the game for us to talk about. It’s slow, it has a bad FPS and just to top it off, firing a missile a fair amount away from the target still seems to hit the target, what’s up with that?
To put it simply, this game is one that probably should’t have been published by the author. We love seeing people take the time and initiative to make an application themselves and publish it for the world to see, but this is just one of those that should’ve stayed locked away on the hard-drive.
One review on the apps Google Play page sums up it in a less than eloquent way, saying “Is this an Elementary school project?” A harsh comment, but perhaps one that accurately sums up the application.
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