Penguins are cute, and at times they can actually take to the air and fly. Not like the wicked stunts pulled off by the penguins found in Air Penguin, but still there is some truth to it. I have seen them swimming at high speed just to break into a frenzied belly swim on the surface.
The controls in Air Penguin is all tilt based, in all directions. The game calibrates the accelerometer before you start up a level, or survival mode. Still I find it to be somewhat too twitchy for my liking. Controlling forwards/backwards feels sluggish whereas to the sides feels too quick. This adds challenge to the game, but at times this turns into frustration when I miss the easiest jump ever.
There are 100 varied levels in Air Penguin, and new obstacles are introduced at a good pace. The main activity is flying through the air trying to land on floating pieces of ice. Soon turtles that you can control are introduced. Sliding sections where you have to avoid holes, and sea lions that end with you having to make a jump by quickly raising your iPhone. Golden fish are scattered around the levels to be picked up, and added to your score. There are also IAP for more golden fish, but I don’t really understand what the use is other than collecting them.
The game comes with Game Center integration for scores, and achievements. You can also use Twitter and Facebook Connect to tell the world of your penguin antics.
A cartoon drawing introduces each new world in story mode, and sets the tone. Overall the presentation is polished, and well made. It won’t blow you away, but on the other hand there is nothing there that bothers me. The music is perhaps a bit uninspired sounding like a mixture of the Zenonia games and Jarres Oxygene era albums. You can of course play your own music if you prefer to.
Air Penguin is a fun little casual game that can be frustratingly hard at times. This is part due to temperamental controls, and part due to actually posing a good challenge. I really prefer casual games that offer touch controls as well because most of the short breaks I am standing, and accelerometer controls are not good on my feet. Weird IAP inclusions also lower the final rating somewhat. Still the game is recommended to the casual gamer who still wants their fish well done.
Air Penguin $0.99
Seller: GAMEVIL Inc.