Glu games has made an engine (or adopted one) and stuck with it. Gun Bros, Eternity Warriors and Star Blitz may have different names, but do they differ in gameplay, in aesthetics and are they all worth your time? Basically, what’s your niche: space, big guns or big swords?
If steroids and big guns are your thing then Gun Bros is the game for you. If space is more your thing then Star Blitz is perfect for you. If you like big swords and hack and slash gameplay then go ahead and download Eternity Warriors. We just can’t recommend downloading more than one because they are all essentially the same game.
Gameplay across the board is fun in all three games which each span hundreds of waves and dozens of levels each harder than the one before it, making these games challenging, keeping you coming back for more. Enemies vary greatly across the games, and within them. In Star Blitz you can expect flying enemies that can zip past and around you to cut you off and surround you. In Eternity Warriors and Gun Bros you can expect slower enemies that walk across the ground. These games include a CPU partner character that occasionally helps you out.
Don't expect the gameplay to be the main draw for fans here though. It's in the upgrades, coins and spacecash that will keep you coming back for more and quick loading of the Store (with the option of the Bank) ensures you keep buying upgrades after every death. Upgrades, power ups, and health packs are all very expensive, but attainable if you are good at the games.
Graphics are well done in all three games. Traversing levels doesn’t become tiring from being too big, but they aren’t too small either. Toward the end of waves in a particular level we found the level repetitive (because we’ve just been on it for the past 3 or 4 hours) but it didn’t take away from the gameplay or our enjoyment too much. Textures are rich and load in before the player can control the character, meaning there isn’t any pop-in.
Sound is well done across the games, with varying sounds for the many different menus, levels and enemy numbers the music seems responds to urgency, and to low health in the games and that's definitely an interesting feature to have.
Openfeint ties nicely into all three games with percentages towards unlocks on the social gaming scale, raising your achievement points slowly over time.
Glu sucks players in with their ‘refinery’ system, which turns a resource in the game (gathered from slayed enemies) into coins but only after 10 minutes, 4 hours, 8 hours, 24 hours or 48 hours. There is an instant option but this yields the lowest payout from the resources provided and almost isn’t worth it. Coins buy parts for your character and more importantly health packs, power-ups and upgrades.
Purchasable from the ‘Bank’ in the store are “Spacebucks” or their equivalent in Gun Bros and Eternity Warriors. These can be purchased in-app through the Market, or earned by completing special offers (advertisements) like signing up for Netflix, Gamefly or a plethora of other monthly services. Free app downloads also bring in spacebucks, but in much lower quantities.
The store for all the games is nearly exactly the same.
Also purchasable are coins which are used for in-game items, these can be earned through playing the game but not in the amount needed to upgrade fast enough to keep pace with the enemy. We advice you spend 2.99 on 20,000 coins at first. Sure, it’s a free game but its not designed like one. We didn’t expect to buy anything from the Bank ourselves but after 4 hours with Glu games you’re certain to be hooked. Soon, 2.99 will turn into 20 dollars or more.
As it turns out quantity is not always better than quality, a lesson Glu can learn from. Pumping out the same game every few months might rake in money from addicted fans but its not fun or innovative in the mobile landscape in any way. We hope in the future Glu will spend more time developing unique games than simply applying copy and paste in their developer tools.