Graviton Review: A Nice Gravity Puzzler

Graviton was released by Chillingo and developed by Virtway.  It is a solid contender in the (gravity/interactive puzzler genre?). The controls are responsive, the levels are detailed and look good, and the experience is enjoyable. I found myself frustrated at times because I didn’t understand some things, but I was able to figure them out after some trial and error. I later found out that you can turn on and off the tutorial in the settings.  I don’t know if I had turned off the tutorial the first time I played or if it isn’t turned on by default, but after I turned on the tutorial, I found Graviton to be much simpler.  However, the tutorial does not tell you about every obstacle you will encounter.  There is still plenty to find out for yourself.

The objective in Graviton is as simple as you can get. Move an object form one side of the level to the other while avoiding numerous obstacles in the way. Accomplishing that objective, one the other hand, can be rather difficult. I have to hand it to the developers; they know how to design a side-scrolling level that takes time to master.

Likes:

Responsiveness: At first I thought the controls were too easy because you could find a position as just float in midair, however, I later found out that this is necessary to avoid/bypass some obstacles. The controls provide a good balance in the game and keep the player from becoming overly frustrated with the many obstacles in their path.

Polish and Level-Design: I found the levels and obstacles to be well-designed and creative. In addition, Graviton has a level of polish I have come to expect from games released by Chillingo.

Dislikes:

Difficulty: At first I was flying through the game, but I quickly found myself becoming overly frustrated with some levels. There are levels that will end your great run just as you are nearing the finish line. If you are type B, that is probably not so frustrating for you. If you are type A+ like me, you may find yourself inventing some new words.  Keep in mind that you also have a limited number of lives, so be careful!

Number and Legth of Levels: Due to the number of levels (5) and the length of levels (about 10 minutes), Graviton does not lend itself well to a pick up and play style.  There aren’t any checkpoints or mid-level saves, so you will have to play the game in at least ten minute intervals.  This does not seem well-designed for an iPhone/iPod game.  I would much prefer to have a larger number of five minute levels.

Overall, I enjoyed my experience playing Graviton. However, I don’t think it is a title that you must own. If you are a fan of these type of games (i.e. dropship), it is a solid contender and worth your consideration. If you are not a fan of the genre, Graviton may or may not be for you. I enjoyed playing, but I don’t think everyone will. You will have to overcome some frustration while playing and have patience. However, I think the end experience will most likely be good for the average player.  I do think that you get your money’s worth for the current price of $1.99.

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Graviton was developed by Virtway and published by Chillingo.  It is available for the iPhone and iPod Touch for $1.99.  I played through version 1.0 on an iPod Touch 2G.

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