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iPhone Game Review: King Strike

Posted by: Tina at 4/10/2010 3:33 PM
iPhone games generally serve a few key purposes. They can provide some sort of companionship like while waiting out a long train ride, or they can be an actual game that you look forward to playing to the point of setting aside time for it. Most iPhone games fall under the former category, but there is certainly a plethora of bad ideas to be found in the Application Store. Read on to find out where the action pool game King Strike falls.





King Strike is one of those games that work well for companionship. The premise of the game is very similar to a game of pool. The screen is laden with alternatively smiling and frowning faces of balls belonging to your team and your opposing team. Each map has a different configuration of their layout, as well as the layout of various obstacles in between you. The objective is always the same: knock the opposing team out of the arena before they knock you out. The last man standing wins the round. Cutely enough, there’s even a storyline involving a King attempting to rescue his only son from the evil Magician who has captured him, giving you more incentive to want to hit the face-balls out of the playing field.

Aiming an unknown virtual force at just the right angle with a selected amount of energy determines at what speed your ball propels in the direction you’ve predetermined. You’ll soon be glad you learned all about Newton’s law of motion when considering that the size of the ball-face you choose to focus on will also have a determination in the effect of your hit.

You can select the ball you wish to use by tapping on it, and then select the direction you want to swing it towards by dragging the dotted line projecting from it, thereby creating the exact vector of your choosing. The amount of force you decide to use is indicated by a colored bar on the bottom of the screen. The interface is clear and simple, only showing the information you need to know.

My only qualm with the game mechanics is that obviously an AI unit would be able to determine the precise amount of force and precise direction needed to hit every one of my balls out of bounds. So in that case, in order to make a fair game against me the AI would have to be intentionally making mistakes. The idea of this doesn’t sit well with someone who appreciates legitimate competition. Of course, this could probably be said for all AI opponents in any game, but it feels that much more insulting in a game that requires you to make scientific judgments.

You could indulge in the multiplayer option to play against another comparatively flawed brain, but I’ve never had the opportunity to do so as it seems no one ever plays the game. I’ve used many a minute in search of an online game but have come up empty handed numerous times. I’ve even sat in my own game waiting for someone to join, but to no avail.

On the other hand, the graphics are quaint and the visuals of stern faces on bulbous bodies are the appropriately comical addition to a very tried and true storyline. This is definitely a game that is fun to play when you need a few moments occupied. If you enjoy playing pool, you will most likely enjoy King Strike given its similar features.

King Strike
: $0.99
Gaming Nexus Grade: B