There aren't many games that I've played from beginning to end. Usually something better comes along and steals my attention or I simply get bored. What have I played to the end? A few such games include StarCraft (PC), Magic the Gathering: Battlegrounds (Xbox), and the original US release of King's Field (PSX). So, despite eating it up, I haven't been able to review Airport Mania because I actually played through it on my iPod Touch and didn't want to spend a couple bucks to validate the Android version. Likewise, it wouldn't exactly be right to review an Android game without playing the Android version. I got my break last week when this went free on the Amazon Appstore for a short while.
Airport Mania is a time management game like Root Beer Tapper and Flight Control. Various events occur and you have to sequence them to maximize efficiency. In this case you're landing planes, unloading/loading passengers, refueling them, and sending them on their way. The game features 6 stages each containing 8 levels.
In the beginning your airport will be simple... two runways, two gates, and two layover spaces. Airplanes will arrive at a moderate pace, but not fast enough to really stress you out. I doubt you'll even need the layover spaces. The game throws a lot of extra scoring opportunities at you such as what a plane of a give color unloads at a given gate then that gates becomes the color of the plane. If the next plane you unload there matches in color then you'll get a bonus. The game also allows you to work many steps in advance... you can tap a plane, a runways, and a gate and then the plane will smoothly land and head on over to the selected game without further interaction. As the game progresses you'll have to manage more runways, will need to refuel your planes, and will have to deal with things such as foggy (aka unusable) runways.
The game's graphics are nice and very cartoony with the planes all sporting pretty eyes along with appropriate audio for plane's coming in and departing. The controls are all touch screen based on just involve tapping on the various areas of the playfield: the plane's overhead, the runways, the gates, the layover spaces...etc. I didn't have any problems with my touches selecting the intended objects and the game played smoothly throughout. Then again this isn't exactly a graphics powerhouse of a game.
As stated, I actually finished this game although without maximizing my score. I'd guess it took 6 or so hours to do so, but that's just a guess. I was surprised when I started again on the Android version just how addictive it still was. My only issue with the game is that I'm not sure it's hard enough. I don't recall having to play too many levels over again in order to beat them. Nonetheless, it kept me challenged and interested after tiring of Flight Control and that's an impressive feature given that I have the attention span of a 3 year old. 4.5/5 stars.