There are many things I could say about Robot Wars, but what struck me most was how detailed the 3d environment was. Perhaps my expectations have been set low by many of the 3d games I’ve seen so far, but Robot wars looked so much more realistic than any other 3d app I’ve come across. Barrels had rust and warning labels, the arena was stained and even damaged in one section, and the vans actually looked like real vans. Even with all the detail, I never noticed the framerate drop even when the action was heavy.
Seeing how much effort was put into the design of the app, I really wanted it to work as well as it looks. Unfortunately this is not always true. The controls can be difficult to master and at times even a little frustrating. I frequently found my robot to be going in the opposite direction I intended. Although I could usually recover and gain control after a few seconds, the first few moments were usually anyone’s guess. My wife (who graciously volunteered to help test the app) is a much less experienced gamer than I and had even more difficulty with the controls. She gave up trying to move the robot at all and just concentrated on aiming. One last word of warning, don’t expect to be sniping in this game. The aiming is much to jerky for anything but face-to-face confrontations.The control issue is made even more difficult by the tiny screen and what I call the “tug-o-war” issue. Since two people play on the same iPhone, you are splitting a fairly small screen into two even smaller ones. Also, with four sets of hands work away on that little screen, some iPhone movement is bound to happen. For some I imagine this will only add to the challenge of the game, but for me it just increased my frustration.
Keep in mind also that this game has no single player mode. I would like the option of being able to play against a bot instead of always splitting the screen with another person. Even the option of wi-fi battles would be a greater incentive for some gamers.
Looking at how beautifully designed the environment is, I can see that the creators put a lot of effort into creating this app. More than anything else, what this app really needs is a few more game modes for variety. I would really like to see a single player or wi-fi versus match, so that the entire screen could show off just how great-looking this app is.