Three and a half inches of fury

To all of you who follow us @TeaBagOrDie on Twitter you will know this already, to those who don’t we are excited to welcome some awesome new writers to the TBoD team. You will get to meet the others over the coming weeks but to kick things off we have a post by the multi-talented Salmonfin. I would link to a little bio about our aquarius blogger but he is getting up to some water-sports in Ibiza as we speak and didn’t have chance to send me one so he will have to remain an enigma for now. Anyway read/comment/subscribe/cheers. -MS Dosser

Its true what they say you know; it’s not the size of the screen that counts, it’s the way you use it. Or did I hear that wrong? Anyway, the rather astute developers at Lake Effect Applications have certainly done no harm to this particular, be it dubious, claim. And in the process have given hope to mobile gamers looking for a shooter fix with their latest creation Trigger Fist.

While I usually avoid shooters on the iOS platform, my mate thought it would be a good idea if I picked it up so we could play together (read: kick my ass).  So, being the great friend that I am, obliged and paid £0.69 of hard-earned student loan for the privilege. After jumping into a game the first thing that struck me was the absence of a y-axis. Meaning, you simply swipe left and right to target your virtual enemies. While this sounds strange for a shooter, I found it to be a stroke of genius as it allows to you focus more on your aiming, rather than flailing round in the heat of battle like an epileptic octopus at a rave. Cue flashbacks to Call of Duty for the Wii. Granted, it does leave the game a little…horizontal, but, less is definitely more in this case. Movement is controlled by a floating joystick on the left of the screen, while aiming is done by swiping anywhere on the screen. Swiping down will allow you to crouch and you change weapons, reload etc. using the icons in the bottom right.

Almost got him

The game has four game modes; team deathmatch, free for all, king of the hill, and my personal favorite, sacred goat. The first three are pretty much self-explanatory. Sacred goat, however, is essentially capture the flag but instead of a flag, you guessed it, you have to pick up a goat who will jump on your back until you’re killed at which point it will continue on its random journey like nothing happened until someone else picks it up. The winning team is the first to keep the goat on their back for 120 seconds. Each of these game modes can be played in 4 different ways, single player with bots, online matchmaking, with friends (via Game Center), and via Bluetooth. Each team consists of 4 players, although, one thing to note is when playing online you’ll only ever have 3 other human players in the game and the rest are bots. This is down to limitations with the Game Center which sucks but c’est la vie.

Unfortunately, I’ve yet to find a ladder in the game

As one would expect there are a number of classes you can choose to be, each with their own progression path. Gunner (LMGs), Rifleman (Assault rifles) and Scout (SMGs) all have their own unique benefits and weapons. Weapons are unlocked individually for each class by gaining points as that class in-game. However, you can buy the next weapon unlock for £0.69. You get the sense that the unlocks are dragged out to entice you to pay for the next weapon, while I don’t mind this strategy in free games I don’t feel they should be forced on you in a game that you have paid £2.99 for (price after the sale, apparently). Perks offer a nice way to customize your load-out and don’t seem to imbalance the game as much as *cough* recent Call of Dutys *cough*.

Ultimately, Trigger Fist understands what its supposed to be and that’s exactly what it is, a pocket shooter. By not forcing over the top graphics or even including a single player campaign it’s given the game a very streamline feel, allowing you to hop on for a quick game or two while on the john. Which is a good thing, too many times I’ve started playing Infinity Blade only to snap back to reality 45 minutes wondering what the time is and why my back’s aching. Anyway, you can pick this bad boy up for £1.99 on the App Store while it’s still on sale.

I hope this rather amateur review didn’t bore you too much. If it did, feel free to abuse me in the comments or if you’re not in the mood to hurt my feelings or have a suggestion for a game I should try, let me know too.