Review Galaga Wars
A modern Galaga
Author: Brandon Girod
Date: 30 Mar 2017, tested on HTC One M8
Fun gameplay, open ended, progressive unlocks
Bloom effect cheapens visuals, clumsy controls
I grew up playing videos games during an awkward time for arcade games. Galaga machines could still be found around dying arcades, so while it wasn’t exactly the “cool” thing to do, it was still a legendary game. Galaga Wars for Android is awesome because it keeps the legend alive and gives new gamers a chance to experience an old school game with contemporary twists.
It’s really hard to fault Galaga for any of the typical mobile arcade tropes because it originated as a way to eat quarters. At least now you don’t have to pop in a quarter every time you want to turn it on. This version of the game has been upgraded with new visuals. On one hand, the game does look like a huge step up from its 1981 counterpart. On the other, there is an odd bloom effect that cheapens the overall visuals. Still, effects look stunning and the perspective shift from top-down to behind the ship is really cool.
Gameplay is familiar but there are quite a few new twists, too. First off, you’ll guide your ship by tapping on it and then dragging it around the screen. This isn’t exactly ideal because it requires you block the view of your ship with your finger. When things get a bit hectic and you need to see every pixel to dodge enemies and projectiles, dying can feel cheap.
Earning strong power-ups happens often and it’s one of the positive changes. You must save ships in order to get them to join up with you, which is a nice twist. Unfortunately, all the power-ups in the game are time-based.
Galaga Wars is a welcome addition to the Play Store lineup, but not everything feels great. The controls are clumsy and lead to cheap deaths, but gameplay is fast and fun.