Android App Video Review: Another World

by Andrew Koziara

Another World is the 20th anniversary updated edition of the cult classic, and the second game to be re-mastered and ported to mobile devices by DotEmu, the first being R-Type. It's a very immersive, atmospheric and intriguing old-school adventure game. The pixelated visuals and the newly updated visuals are great, with both options being made available for your choosing.

The story is quite simple. You play as a scientist who is accidentally transported to an alien world. It's now up to you to survive all the strange and exotic flora and fauna of the world, including its very hostile natives. You are soon captured and must escape with your cell mate and the help of a laser gun. Trust me when I say that you will die a lot in this game. As you explore the landscape, you'll frequently happen upon unexpected enemies and hazards, and then must correct your approach through trial and error.

The controls are quite simple and well done. They come in specialized gesture controls as well as a virtual directional pad and action button. The gesture controls are fairly intuitive and well done, but I found it to generally be easier to use the D-pad in the game’s more stressful and timing focused sections. One of my favorite features is the ability to switch between old and new graphics with a simple two finger swipe. The new visuals have some very cool looking scenes, but for the most part, I admire and respect the pixel graphics. They conveyed a lot of cool images with very little detail.

The ambient music or even lack of music with well-done sound design does a very good job of setting the mood. This game is all about adventure and discovery, and that is conveyed extremely well, even if the gameplay isn’t as easy to learn or as streamlined as modern titles. People who lack patience will be very frustrated with this game. Heck, even I was frustrated playing on the lowest difficulty. But for its time, it really was quite awesome. Despite the lack of hand-holding and the occasional brutal checkpoint, few games before or since this title have been as imaginative, and it really makes you yearn for the old days a bit. No matter what kind of gamer you are, it’s nice to look through this app as a window to gaming’s history. Another World is supported by OpenFeint and available for five dollars at the time of this review. It is worth every penny.

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