Pocket Tanks – Review
Follow Genre: Action, strategy
Developer: Blitwise Productions
Publisher: Blitwise Productions
Platform: Android, iPad, iPhone (also on PC and Mac OS X)

Pocket Tanks – Review

Site Score
7.4
Good: Great update of a classic game, hotseat multiplayer.
Bad: Lack of online features will keep playtimes to a minimum.
User Score
10.0
(3 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (3 votes cast)

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Now this is a personal blast from the past. Let me clarify that somewhat. Pocket Tanks is based on a game that’s accompanied me throughout my gaming career. Two tanks shooting at each other from both sides of a mountainous area was the first game available on the black and white Apple I had as a kid, at the age of twelve, my school’s DOS/Win 95 computers had it hidden behind layers of maps. The game subsequently stayed with me during my years in high school as a flash game.

And finally, nowadays, Pocket Tanks has those unrelenting tanks invade my i-devices. Talk about tenacity.

Story

I wouldn’t know what anyone would expect here. There is no story, there’s just two tanks shooting and moving, slowly laying out the other side’s doom.

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Graphics

Pocket Tanks is as basic a game as they get. A black background forms a stark contrast against the bright-green mountains that make up the screen-wide maps.

Different shots all have their own unique graphics, but those as well turn out to be very simple.

I don’t know what else to say, games like this never focus on things like art direction or graphical horsepower. Pocket Tanks especially seems to cater to a crowd of retro-gamers and to those die-hard-old-school-loving-fans.

Sound

Again Pocket Tanks keeps it simple. No need for fancy tunes in a game that’s designed to entertain you in short bursts. The few tracks that are included are gentle and cheerful.

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Gameplay

Gameplay is where Pocket Tanks changes the formula a bit. Instead of chipping away at your opponent’s health, the winner of a match is decided by whoever did the most damage by the end of the round.

Here’s how it works. When you start a game, you and the other player, which can be either a computer-guided tank or another human being,  each take turns at choosing one of many different shots. Each attack has its own quirks. Sure, there are the old and trusted weapons like a nuke, homing attacks and triple shots, but it’s things like a tesla coil attack that really up the ante and force you into considering proper tactics.

Some attacks aren’t just for damaging the other player either, instead offering a shield or even isolating either yourself or your opponent for a couple of turns. It’s as if Worms invaded the original Artillery-game.

An ingame shop offers extra weapons for those who’re playing the free version of the game -those who actually spent money on Pocket Tanks get those for free-  and developer Blitwise seems to be releasing more over time.

It’s all good fun and having a hotseat two-player mode that allows you to pass on your device to a friend could offer some great competitions in your household.

There’s a downside though. Pocket tanks could have used online support. Yes, I know, this was made by a small company and servers do cost a lot of money, yet I can’t shake the feeling that after all those years I’m still playing essentially the same game, but without the online community that has kept the game alive on several game-portals.

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Conclusion

Pocket Tanks is a great trip down memory lane. Its minimalistic design is a testament to how some concepts don’t need great or cute graphics. The fact that having two tanks shoot at each other withstood the hands of time says a lot.

Offering hotseat-multiplayer was a brilliant move, but the lack of online support will seriously limit the amount of time you’ll be smitten with this game before moving on to the next app of the day.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (3 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Pocket Tanks - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 3 ratings

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