When I have a bad day at work I accidentally forget to include an attachment in an email message to my students or colleagues, or go to the wrong classroom for class. The poor mechanic sent to fix the Space Elevator in Mechanic Panic has a completely different view on the concept of having a bad day at work. Something has gone wrong with the elevator, and your task is to fix the pump. From the moment you bang your wrench into the pump you realise that this maintenance won`t result in a checked square on a report sheet. This will be know around the world, and you have very little time to ponder these thoughts. A fireball is ascending from below, and you have to escape now. It is not time for a minor anxiety attack, this is Mechanic Panic.
There are quite a few different jumping games in the App Store. Ninjatown: Trees of Doom and NinJump are two of the most successful, and Mechanic Panic has quite a lot of common with those titles. It is controlled with one touch, and timing along with quick decisions is what the game is all about. Another aspect the three titles have in common is the fact that they are all about scoring big, by climbing high. Death is inevatible, but at least our nice mechanic gets to save a few lives.
Touch to jump is such a simple concept, but still it manages to truly grab my attention. As you jump there are elevators crashing down, and others flying up. Timed correctly the ones flying upwards can be ridden to gain some extra height before they explode. The walls of the elevator shaft have different traps, and levers. Hot areas force you to automatically jump, and electricity halts and stuns you while also shutting down the lights. Thankfully there are switches to turn on the lights again. The game is completely generated on random, and there is no memorization of level structure to Mechanic Panic.
By timing your jumps you can save innocents that have fallen out of the elevator. After being saved you stick them to the wall, and keep jumping. There are also other players to save that gives you bonus points. This gives the game an extra dimension. Instead of only being a survival jumping game it also turns into a rescue game.
The game is over if the ever ascending flames engulf you, or you get hit by a falling object or elevator. Leaderboards and achievements are available through OpenFeint. I have had issues with OpenFeint for many games where it update achievements as you play, and this is the case with Mechanic Panic as well. For a moment it slows down when an achievement is recorded. Slightly annoying, but the more achievements you unlock the less it happens.
The presentation in Mechanic Panic is really good with some cool lighting effects. Overall it is kind of dark, and not suitable for play in sunlight or outside. I would like to have the option to use a lighter theme or skin for outdoor play. The music is up-tempo techno that gets my adrenaline going. You can play your own tunes as well.
Mechanic Panic is one of the most fun casual jumping games I have come across. It combines simple controls, a great concept and varied obstacles. It is easy to spend way to much time trying to beat your own highest score, and rescue other players falling through your shaft. A great game where one game mode is all you need. Mechanic Panic gets my total recommendation.
Mechanic Panic $0.99
Seller: Jeffrey Yim