Features & Use
K'UMPA is a game that uses your phone's motion sensors. You move the ball around by tilting and rotating your phone.
The Game's Story:
The makers of K'UMPA developed a mysterious story around this game. It's all about a ball called "K'UMPA" as it is known in the land of the Incas. Don't ask me about the correct pronunciation of that tricky word.
So as you can see, K'UMPA simply means ball in the Inca language. We are never told what this ball is doing inside a temple in the first place. Not that it's of any real importance, anyway. A slew of dangers stand in your way as you travel through this vast temple. The Incas made sure to keep their temples safe from outsiders like us. Therefore you've got to keep safe and avoid touching the wrong stone in order to escape the wrath of the gods.
The Game's Objective:
Every level has its own objective. Before starting a level, a small objective description, including the difficulty level, is displayed. By completing all the listed objectives, you gain access to new levels. Your main goal is to complete as many levels in the game as possible. Usually, this involves you activating a certain amount of magical fields. Rolling your ball over a field automatically activates it. On top of that, you are up against a tough time limit.
You can also collect points on every level. Since there isn't a list of top scorers available, the points aren't really crucial to the game.
Even in its free version, K'UMPA offers you a plenty of different levels and difficulty settings:
- Entry Hall: Ridiculously Easy; Objective: activate 25 magical fields in 200 sec.
- Circle of Death: Super Easy; Activate 4 magical fields in 100 sec.
- Energy Flows: Super Easy; Activate 35 magical fields in 25 sec.
- The First Maze: Super Easy; Activate 20 magical fields in 75 sec.
- Gold: Super Easy; Activate 5 magical fields in 20 sec.
- Hawcha's first chamber: Easy; Activate 8 magical fields in 80 sec.
- Hawcha's ordeal: Easy; Activate 1 magical field in 4 sec.
- Inner balance light: Easy; Activate 2 magical fields in 100 sec.
- thatsLife: Easy; Activate 2 magical fields in 200 sec.
- Ayahasca: Easy; Activate 25 magical fields in 120 sec.
- And many more...
There are obviously many other maps available that just haven't been activated yet. You'll find a scroll bar with locked maps on your main screen. I'm sure that new maps will be unlocked in the near future.
The game's level of professionalism is astounding. Both graphics and music are remarkably good. The concept behind this game also seems very well thought out. Unfortunately, there is a lack of variety between the different levels. All the game objectives are basically the same regardless of the level. I believe that the developers should perhaps take a look at "Hyperspace" in order to improve their own product.
But given the fact that this game came about as a result of a hobby project by a group of young Germans, I find the game to be pretty spectacular. I'm stocked to see what new things this young team of developers can come up with.
Screen & Controls
The entire game is controlled by intuitively tilting and moving around your phone. I did get the feeling that the ball wasn't always perfectly responsive to my movements. Sometimes the ball would just get stuck on the edge of a wall. That could cost you a ton of precious time! The ball's movement isn't as realistic as on Hyperspace. The physics of the game's controls are a little rough around the edges.
I would've loved to have had a small overview map showing me the ball's current location inside the entire complex. Perhaps the developers intentionally wanted to make life for us players a bit harder. Personally, I wouldn't mind if they added this feature to the game. Beyond that I disliked the fact that there isn't a list of top scorers available. What's the point of collecting points if you can't compare your results with other players around the world? Beats me!
Another small drawback that I noticed is that you restart back the map every time you fail to complete a level. I would've preferred to see a "Try again?" option at the end of each game. It might be a small problem, but it can be extremely annoying.
K'UMPA is a great, well-designed game with a couple of small weaknesses. Despite the amazing graphics and sound, this game fails to score all five stars. The game desperately needs some improvements in the physics department.
Speed & Stability
The game runs fast and has an all-around great performance. I did, however, experience two forced closures without any apparent reason...
K'UMPA can be downloaded for free from the Android Market.