Home

Share this Story

Review: TiltArena > PewPew

A couple weeks ago I reviewed a Geometry Wars lookalike called “Pew Pew,” which was fun, but I had a few complaints about. I’m generally not a fan of games like it, which try to emulate game controls on-screen. Coupled with the fact that the play area was a bit on the small side, these joysticks blocked my field of play to the point where it was frustrating.

However, yesterday I came across another Geometry Wars clone which solved most of the problems I had with PewPew. Instead of relying on on-screen controls, Tilt Arena does everything via your phone’s accelerometer. By tweaking sensitivity settings found in the menu, users can fine-tune their steering and speed and blow up shapes to their heart’s content.

The graphics are beautiful and emulate the Geometry Wars experience a lot more closely, right down to the screen flashes when enemies die. This is a recent change, and one that can be thankfully turned off. The game also manages to zoom out a little bit, giving the player a greater view of the battlefield they’re playing on.

What really got me was how well it ran on my aging Milestone; not many games that involve a lot of action and particle effects do. Tilt Arena was smooth, responsive and the opposite of frustrating, which wins it major points. To give you guys an idea of how it plays, I whipped together a quick gameplay demo.

YouTube Preview Image

The only thing I find lacking with this game is its lack of depth: PewPew may have been a bit more annoying in gameplay, but at least it had a lot of variety when it came to play modes and ship selection. There’s really no replayability here except for a high score table, which is a bit disappointing. However, apparently this is Priority Interrupt’s first effort at a game: hopefully more updates are coming.

Tilt Arena is a free download

Source: Reddit

Matt Demers is Droid Life’s app guy, and is sick as a dog. You can hear it in the video. You can wish him well via Twitter or e-mail.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joelseph98 Joel Seph

    Am I the only one who immediately got a warm fuzzy when I heard the music? Don’t care much about the game, but the music takes me back to a happy place. : )

  • http://www.facebook.com/joelseph98 Joel Seph

    Am I the only one who immediately got a warm fuzzy when I heard the music? Don’t care much about the game, but the music takes me back to a happy place. : )

    • DaveIsAwesome

      I’m pretty sure it’s from Mega Man 2.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=739332592 Joe Bertolino

    PewPew is better.

  • http://twitter.com/daveloft Dave Loft

    I’ll take the on screen gamepad any day over tilting, just seeing how long it took you to get the box proves how lame it is. You also have to move in the same direction you shoot. The dual analog sticks of PewPew blows this away.

    • Interrupt

      The tilt is actually pretty sensitive, it’s tuned way more towards the hardcore end of the spectrum and in testing seems more accurate than an onscreen virtual thumbpad when aiming. it also doesn’t have the problem of losing your input, something that happens easily in most mobile games with that control scheme.

      That said having onscreen controls does seem to be everyone’s request so I’ll add it as an optional control scheme and leave the choice up to the user.

  • Interrupt

    Thanks for the review! The great thing about being an indie dev for a platform like Android is the ability to iterate on an idea and get them in front of players quickly. I’m planning on adding a global leaderboard, new game modes besides the current endless mode and new enemies so watch for updates.

    What do people think about unlocks? I was thinking that weapon unlocks at score levels could be fun, but also seems to be on the evil side of game design.

    • Anonymous

      I loved the game. Sadly it doesn’t work right on my xoom. I have noticed some tilt games work some don’t.

      • Interrupt

        Someone with a Xoom on Reddit mentioned the same thing yesterday, I’m looking into a fix for it. The game could probably also be zoomed out a bit more on that huge screen – I need to track one down to play with.

        • Anonymous

          I will glad test any fixes u come across if that will help u at all. I do
          nothing but sit at home after work anyway lol.

          • Interrupt

            I put out an update today that fixes tilt issues on some devices, Nook color & Xoom included. I also added preferences to invert the horizontal and vertical inputs if for some reason a device still wants to switch things around.

        • Anonymous

          I will glad test any fixes u come across if that will help u at all. I do
          nothing but sit at home after work anyway lol.

  • goblueboy

    PewPew controls are okay, they are better than this. but the graphics on tiltarena is much better. if they added controls or a wiimote hook up then this game would be too legit

  • http://twitter.com/trongable Trong Nguyen

    Heads up, PewPew had it’s field of vision zoomed out a TON since a day or two after you first reviewed it and has had a bunch of updates to it since.

    Each to their own, but I feel like accelerometer controls aren’t precise enough for higher levels of play and Tilt Arena looks like it takes a while for it to become challenging.

  • http://twitter.com/trongable Trong Nguyen

    Heads up, PewPew had it’s field of vision zoomed out a TON since a day or two after you first reviewed it and has had a bunch of updates to it since.

    Each to their own, but I feel like accelerometer controls aren’t precise enough for higher levels of play and Tilt Arena looks like it takes a while for it to become challenging.

    • http://twitter.com/trongable Trong Nguyen

      Definitely a problem with this game: you can’t shoot behind you or to your side.

      • Interrupt

        There are weapons that do just that, but since the score multiplier is tied to the weapon pickups it forces the player from getting too complacent and sticking with one weapon.

        • http://twitter.com/trongable Trong Nguyen

          But then if I’m running around the map, I can’t choose to shoot behind me. The only way to do that without a power up is to physically turn around the ship so I have to stop in my tracks and hope that I’m not surrounded by the time I’m done killing them.

          • Interrupt

            Yeah, it turns things into more of a dogfight that way. I do want to add some more powerups to make it easier to turn tables on guys giving chase, like bombs you can trip and temporary shields that let you plow through enemies.

            Right now a good tactic for the fast red enemies is to take advantage of their turning speed, the player can maneuver much faster even though their overall speed is about the same, so making them overshoot the player and get stuck in a corner makes them sitting ducks for most of the weapons – especially the green bullets that pass through multiple enemies.

    • http://twitter.com/mattdemers Matt Demers

      Tilt controls can be configured in a menu. I’m at like 25% sensitivity.

      • http://twitter.com/trongable Trong Nguyen

        I was talking about precision, not sensitivity. Like mouse vs joysticks and virtual joysticks vs tilt controls.

  • Scotty96

    Um…no…PewPew is gold compared to this. Controlling with tilting is casual gaming garbage.

  • Scotty96

    Um…no…PewPew is gold compared to this. Controlling with tilting is casual gaming garbage.

  • Scotty96

    Um…no…PewPew is gold compared to this. Controlling with tilting is casual gaming garbage.

  • http://blog.amwmedia.com Andrew Worcester

    you can shrink the joysticks in pew pew, makes it much better :-)

    • Scotty96

      I’ll try that…I really like the game but I feel like my thumbs get “stuck” after a few minutes, I figure I’m sweaty or dirty. But it’s still a great game experience I can’t wait to try with the Xperia Play

  • http://markpude.com Mark P

    I find tilt control painful to use. I prefer the onscreen touch controls even if it blocks a little of the screen. They just feel so much more responsive.

  • Anonymous

    That’s funny, I am the opposite way. Anything that uses the accelerometer to move is not my favorite. It restricts how you can hold your phone while playing. I like to play laying down sometimes and the accelerometer makes that hard. Just based off of your video, I like the way Pew Pew looks better. Good review though, to each his own.

  • Anonymous

    Glad I wasn’t the only one who felt pew pew was more aggravating than fun at times. I admit I could only get 2 bronze medals after playing for an hour or so and never unlocked any other ships. Just seemed a bit too frantic for me. Might give this a shot if it’s supposed to be easier.

    Good luck with the sickness, just got over it myself (said while crossing my fingers)

  • Toddlower

    First

    • MrWolf

      I’m sure your parents are proud.

      • Toddlower

        No, they were actually pretty bummed out, you see, I screamed first, even though my twin brother was older by 2 seconds. From that day on, they’ve known I am retarded.