From stuffed animals to beach towels, from toothpaste to feminine hygiene products, Angry Birds is everywhere. (Ok maybe there aren’t Angry Birds licensed feminine products…..yet.)
A staggering amount of people have played some iteration of the Angry Birds franchise. Maybe Seasons is your favorite, maybe Rio or you are still rockin’ the original game from way back in 2009. Whichever one you prefer, Angry Birds Space surely intends to bring you into its flock.
The first proper sequel to Rovio’s smash hit game, Angry Birds Space rockets our ill-tempered feathered friends to ~spoiler alert!~ OUTER SPACE!
Instead of worrying about Earth’s physics, you will be taking the vacuum of space and the gravitational pull of various planetoids.
At first, all is well. The game controls the same as every other Angry Birds iteration, but you quickly notice that each planetoid’s gravity affects your shot differently. Some planets have strong gravity, which is represented by a larger gravitational field, others have weaker gravity that only kicks in when you are just above the surface.
For me, this changed everything. I started lining up crazy shots on a whim to see how the gravity would change my trajectory, and hopefully increase my score by taking the puzzles from a different perspective. Sometimes I would shoot my slingshot backwards in an attempt to hit a TNT box that I may have a tougher time coming at a normal angle. Other times I would try for a straight approach and let gravity do its thing. No matter what I did, when I cleared a stage, I felt much more accomplished than I had in previous Angry Birds games in the past.
The design of this game feels more open, and the solutions to the puzzles make you feel like you are some kind of super smart bird flinging guy. In older Angry Birds games there was often a sense of “That should have worked!” randomness that would cause frustration. This is present in Angry Birds Space, but to a much lesser extent.
There are new birds available, even though a couple feel like space-age variations on the ones we know and love. We get a square blue bird that turns whatever is nearby into brittle ice when you tap the screen. Great for getting those really entrenched pigs. Another newcomer is the Purple bird, which acts similarly to the yellow bird of past games, however he can change direction in midair to target wherever you tapped. This bird adds an immense level of depth and allows more creativity with your shots in stages where he appears.
The other new feature is the Space Eagle. This allows you to basically get past a difficult level by summoning a black hole eagle in the area you choose. You get a limited amount of space eagles through normal game play, but naturally, you are encouraged to buy more with real money.
The only real complaint I would have with the game is the length. There are only two normal worlds, each containing 30 stages available with the purchase price. There also is a set of extremely challenging levels available for purchase called the “Danger Zone!” I am sure there will be more downloadable stages to come, but the fact that a good number of levels are wasted re-teaching you the game and introducing the new mechanics, it feels like there are only 40 or so levels that really challenge you.
Should you get it?
Well unless you hate Angry Birds, absolutely. The game improves and builds upon existing mechanics, just like a sequel should. Let’s hope they continue with more levels sooner than later and this game will stay installed for a long time to come.