Feb 25, 2010

Winter Game Fantasy

Winter Game Fantasy from OmniGSoft made its debut in the Market a few days ago at a price of $6.99. I've never paid that much for an Android game before so it must be good right? To tell the truth, one of the other reasons I was attracted to this was the price coupled with the two star (out of five) rating. What's going on here? Is this another case of a popular game maker trying to bilk money out of Android owners desperate for new games? Or rather a case of reviewers that don't give the game a fair shake. Let's take a look...

First, Winter Game Fantasy is three games in one... kind of. It features skiing, snowmobile racing, and the ever popular orca race. The reality is that this is a racing game package with all three games being very similar in nature. In skiing the player moves left and right and tries to ski between the flags, in snowmobile racing it's left and right around the race course, and in orca racing you're navigating through the rings in water with an added up/down element.

Control is one complaint I read and it's true... the games do NOT use the accelerometer which is a pity as that was made for this kind of action. Instead they use the DPad (on my Droid) and I presume the trackball on other Android devices. One initial issue was playing the games in portrait move and having the snap the keyboard out to the side while I play creating an awkward experience, but the pros at OmniGSoft did, at least, think of that and allow the games to be played in landscape mode like on a Nintendo DS. Hopefully an update might add accelerometer support.

The graphics and sounds on these games are great! I love winter and consequently love the snowy scenes. The screen shot to the right is from the snowmobile racing potion of the game. And once you recover from the disappointment of no accelerometer support you realize the controls work just fine.

Of the three games I like skiing the best. A ski lasts a minute or two and finally provides a quality arcade skiing experience. The snowmobile race actually grated on me. As much as I enjoyed the scenery the race was way too long... to the point that I never actually completed one because I got a bit bored. I do appreciate that it provides some nice snowy scenery for me to turn to in the summer months, though. Finally, I found the orca a challenge to control, but I always seem to have challenge with these 'fly through the rings games' so I'll take the blame there. The game did add an interesting aspect of having to monitor oxygen levels and the occasional need to surface for air.

The games don't appear to feature much in the way of depth. Each one features 3 different courses so that might keep you busy for a little bit, but they are the kinds of games I can see coming back to again. On the other hand, OmniGSoft has two other racing games for the Android and it would be a hard sell if you owned either Snow Rally Canada (replaced by snowmobile racing) or Super-G Stunt (replaced by orca racing).

My conclusion... 4 out of 5 stars. This is a quality title that despite the lack of any real depth and being clearly on the pricey side for the Android Market is still enjoyable (and cute) to play.

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