Friday, December 11, 2015

IOS Review #108: Power Hover

Title: Power Hover
Developer: Oddrok
Platforms: IOS Universal
Price: $3.99
Between Temple Run, Subway Surfer, and everything in between, I've been somewhat burned out on behind-the-back runners. It's one of the most common genres on mobile, and in recent years, seems to have been reduced to the format for generic licensed titles. Switch lanes, jump, slide....sometimes it feels like if you've played one, you've played them all. None that I've played have been able to match the variety and style of the hectic Boson X...till now. With its incredibly varied stages and colorful low-poly aesthetic, Power Hover is easily one of the best runners on mobile.
The story is simple. The energy to your robot village has been stolen,  get on your hoverboard and follow the thief's trail of batteries to retrieve the power. It's merely there to serve as a framework for the fast-paced chases and hazards to evade, and it's in those aspects that Power Hover shines.

Endless deserts where massive worms gracefully arc through the sands. Sea-bound ruins and seaside cliff faces. Tight canyons wracked by seismic tremors and drills erupting from the dirt. Every level in Power Hover is unique, not merely in terms of locations and hazards, but in how the camera seamlessly changes perspective. One moment, you're guiding your robot boarder through discarded shipping containers from high up; the next, the camera swoops in close as you enter a claustrophobic tunnel.
The constantly changing locations and perspectives, even within the same level, makes each stage feel like an adventure, driving you to see what comes next. The hazards along the way are equally diverse, ranging from stationary stones and rusted cars to rolling spikes and saws to lasers. Between hand-crafted stages and endless boss levels, Power Hover offers a surprising amount of variety in every aspect of its gameplay.

The reflex-testing action wouldn't be worth experiencing if the controls weren't tight. Actually, tight is the wrong word. Your hoverboard has an intentional looseness to it, feeling more like surfing than rigid lane swapping. You're always in control, even as as you smoothly weave between obstacles or grind across rails, but doing so skillfully requires timing and looking ahead to prepare for the next section,

Power Hover's aesthetic completes this polished package. Each level pops with vivid colors and interesting sights, whether it's a coastal strait with wind turbines and gulls skimming the water or a massive machine lumbering through the desert.
Power Hover is available for $3.99 on iPad and iPhone.

1 comment:

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