Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Review: "Coco Loco" by Chillingo

If you have an iPhone or an iPad and have never played Angry Birds, then you're lying and you don't actually have an iPhone or an iPad.  The puzzle game has taken the mobile gaming world by storm, has moved to other platforms, and has even gone on to real life toys.  With such success, it was easy to predict that imposters wouldn't be far behind.  That was my initial impression of Chillingo's Coco Loco.  Luckily, I was wrong.

The basic premise behind Coco Loco is fairly simple and will be familiar to Angry Birds fans: launch characters at objects to hit other characters.  That's about where the similarities end, though.  For one, you play as some cute little marshmallows trying to save their friends from some evil cocoa beans.  If that concept sounds super cute, then you'll be happy to know that the graphics go along great with it.  The characters are well-done, the colors are bright and bold, and the animations are fluid.

Speaking of fluid (segue!) the physics behind the game are fantastic.  Liquid movement is realistic and details such as steam and jelly go a long way to adding variety and strategy to what could easily become a stale genre.  You'll use ninjas, bombs, jelly, and other types of characters to slice, crush, and smash your way through each level.  There aren't that many initial levels, but three-star rating system allows for some replayability, and future levels are promised.

It would be easy to write Coco Loco off as an Angry Birds knockoff, but that would be unfair.  There are some superficial similarities between the two, Coco Loco has enough uniqueness and charm to stand on its own and is a worthwhile $0.99 purchase.

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