Feb 9, 2011

Tap To Shoot (Reviews of Agent, Eagle Nest, Lets Fire, and Wild West Sheriff)

I was absent last week so here's a treat... four reviews in one day of games with a "tap the screen to shoot at a target" theme. Please note that each game's title is a link to the game in the Android Market. Let's take a looksie...

Agent Demo

Agent is the only paid title I'm covering here so you'd expect it to be the best. It does have a free 'demo' version available as well. The author states that it's taken a year of work to make the game. Unfortunately, even with all of that work, at $3 it may be a little pricey for a simple shooter. I tried the demo and the title screen is less than visually pleasing. The game does, however, offer a campaign mode and multiplayer as it begs and pleads for you to give it a 5 star rating in the Android Market. I guess it doesn't hurt to ask?

Once you make it into the actual game and through all the very primitively designed info screens the game is very nicely done. The targets move smoothly into place and have visual timers above them so you know exactly where you stand. Tap to shoot and you can feel that the game feels right on target. As the game advances more targets appear at the same time and then they start to shoot back and soon it's time to buy the full version with 38 more levels. As you progress you also earn money to buy 'in game' merchandise which is a nice, little touch.

Multiplayer mode isn't really what I expected. In multiplayer there's a split screen with one player taking the top and the other taking the bottom while you compete at the same time. I was thinking network or hot seat play, but this is actually kind of cool. But a phone's screen is just too small to make this work really well with the scaled down graphics... multiplayer mode really cries out for a tablet.

Eagle Nest is a free, ad supported game so you'll see ads during loading screens, but not during actual game play. The game doesn't offer much in the way of variety, but it does have a few differences from Agent including a pretty title screen. First, during play you'll be given a "goalscore" that you're trying to beat in order to advance and let me tell you that advancement is not easy. Second, it's the only game that doesn't offer a weapon with infinite ammo. You're equipped with a six shooter and have to tap the bottom of the screen periodically (or when you hear 'click' instead of 'bang') to reload. The game is accompanied by some nice music and while the animations aren't quite as smooth as in Agent it still looks pretty good.

Lets Fire is odd for an interesting reason which I'll get to later. It's a freebie that has ads on its menu screen and features four modes of play: Normal, 1 Minute, Hunter, and Bubble modes. In Normal mode it's just a plain target shoot. The instructions say shoot and level up, but I never had any luck with that. 1 Minute mode is just as it says... hit as many targets as you can in a minute. Hunter mode has you having to shoot only targets of a given color. And Bubble mode has you shooting targets before they leave the play area.

The game has a techno soundtrack playing throughout and offers no options... just the four modes of play. The graphics are ok with standard bulls eye targets occasionally being dragged by balloons or something else. Shooting is on a delay, but that's pretty clearly intentional... just tap to shoot and wait for a fraction of a second before hearing the sound of your shot ring through the air. Double, triple, ...etc tap and that subsequent shot fires immediately after your prior shot telling me that the game isn't suffering from a slow down issue with the firing delay.

Now I said this was odd for an interesting reason and you'll note that I have no link, screen shots, or QR code for this game. That's because after downloading it I can no longer find it. The game contains no credits. The name of the game is apparently different depending on who you talk to... my icon's title says "Lets Fire", but once loaded the game says "Hit It" with bullets for the letter 'I'. In a nutshell, even if I loved this game I can't find it in the market as my searches for both of those titles didn't produce the correct game.

Edit: Thanks to mrben for providing the new and correct name of this game: Finger Shooting. Photos and QR code added.

Wild West Sheriff

Wild West Sheriff is a bit different in that it's not strictly a tap to shoot style game. Instead, you are defending a small group of settlers from invading cowboys and Indians. I'm assuming that you are the "Wild West Sheriff". You tilt your Android device to move a gun sight and then you tap to fire. Invaders often give a sign of when and where they're going to strike so you can prioritize your killing and the game treats you to a nice pool of blood left in your enemy's footsteps once they are properly dealt with. Once again not much in the way of options and once again the game is ad supported. However, the game does allow you to complete for spots on the Internet leader board via Scoreloop.


I have to say that Lets Fire is the weakest of these games and that's saying something. It's not that it is a bad game, but just that it's been outclassed by the others in terms of graphics and theme. Just shooting a plain-jane floating target isn't going to be enough for a cream of the crop type game. Next, Agent, while probably being the best of the group, loses out because of the cost. It's quality isn't so superior that it's the go to game of the group. Yes, if you're so enthralled with this style of game you'll probably want to eventually get it and if it was a buck I'd probably give it the win, but not at $3 when other quality free games exist. The difference between Eagle Nest and Wild West Sheriff, however, is going to come down to preference. Do you want to touch to fire or do you like the idea of tilting your Android to move a gun sight? Fortunately you can have both for free and that's a good thing and a bad thing. Hopefully we, as Android owners, aren't getting so many ad driven freebies that it drives the larger commercial ventures away. I guess that remains to be seen. In the meantime, fire away. All four of these games are fun to play... if you can find them in the Market (I'm looking at you 'Lets Fire').

1 comment:

  1. Let's Fire has been renamed Finger Shooter, although the package name was the same: