What are the Japanese best known for? Let’s sum it up (and generalize just a tiny bit): sushi, crazy inventions, Anime, robots, and computer games. The latter two points are really big in Japan at the moment. Japanese games are popular all over the world and often offer interesting gameplay alternatives. Japanese research also impressively shows us what the future of robots might hold.
When you combine those two elements, the result is a “Mecha Game”, a very popular type of game in Japan. And now, at last, a Mecha Game is available for Android.
If you are partial to mechs, sweet optics, and unusual gameplays then have a read-through of this test review.
(This test review was written by Aleksander Danilov, to whom we’re very grateful.)
Features & Use
As its name suggests, ExZeus Arcade is an arcade shooter. The goal of the game is to fly through as many levels as possible, destroying as many enemy units, collecting bonuses, and enhancing your weapon along the way.
The downloading only really starts after you’ve downloaded the app from the Market: you have to download a 57 MB sized file package, which harbors graphics, 3D objects, and everything else you’ll need to enjoy the game. But the download’s size shouldn’t put you off too much: you’ll be compensated with such graphic splendor that most iPhone users would go green with envy. The highly stylized levels and typically Japanese mechs will not only impress Japan and Anime fans.
Every time you start a new game, you’ll be given the choice between three different mechs, all three of which have different attributes and weapons. What you then have to do in order to survive (which can be kind of tough at times) is fly through each level in order to meet and beat the big boss at the end of the game.
Once you’ve successfully mastered a level, the money which you’ve collected will be credited to your account. You’re then granted possible upgrades such as “More life” or “More shield”.
In order to get cracking as quickly as possible, the developers have compiled a fully animated tutorial which explains the different battle options. There are five levels at present, in which the level of difficulty increases the higher you go—typical for arcade games.
Screen & Controls
One of ExZeus’ defining features are the unusual controls, which fully hinge on the phone’s accelometer.
Before you start playing you have to do a calibration—this allows you to optimally control the mech. If you tip the phone away from yourself, the mech flies upward. It flies down when you tip your phone the other way. At the beginning this is a little bit tricky to do, and unfortunately at this stage it will seem as though the mech has a mind of its own.
You activate the mech’s canons by tipping the right half of the screen. Tipping the screen to the left allows you to focus on your opponents. Tipping to the right again you can then smite them down with a rocket. By wiping across the screen from the upper right to the lower right you can produce a downpour of bombs which will wipe out/damage any visible opponents.
There are three menu button on the home screen:
Under options you’ll find many ways of setting up a game. You can navigate through the options menu by using the little arrows in the bottom margin of your screen; these will divide Options into five categories:
- Music Volume
- SFX Volume
- Tutorial Sound
- Reverse Up/Down
- Reverse Fire Buttons
--> reverses the right and left part of the screen
- Calibrate Up/Down
• Controls 2
- Tilt Sensivity (L/R)
- Tilt Sensivity (U/D)
--> Sensitivity for tilting from left to right / up and down
- Flip Screen
--> Turns the screen180°
- Enemy Speed
- Boss Speed
--> The last two tell you how fast opponents will be advancing and influence the degree of difficulty
--> Changes the language from Japanese to English
- Splash Screen
--> Switches online modus from the beginning of the game on or off
• - Online Score
--> Automatically publish your score
--> Select your country for statistics
ExZeus is an awesome game, even if the controls take some getting used to. Optically this thing blows not only your socks but your boots off, too. The developers managed to combine graphics with Gameplay brilliantly. Here’s hoping they’ll come out with a second version soon.
Speed & Stability
ExZeus Arcade run smoothly on the Milestone during the test.
You can download ExZeus Arcade for 350¥, which is about 3,75$ or 2,80€.