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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Bug War - Game of the Day

What is it?Bug War puts you on the frontline of an epic conflict of insects, where you need to ensure that your colony reigns supreme.

Who made it? – It was developed by ArtLogic Games.

How does it play?Bug War is a frantic combination of strategy and quick reflexes. Each level consists of a series of bug colonies connected by pathways. Colonies inhabited by your insect army will continue to grow in population, and the number of bugs in a given colony is displayed below the colony itself.

Your objective is to take over all of the onscreen colonies while preventing your opponents from doing the same. Clicking a colony that you own selects it. Then, click on an enemy colony to attack, or a friendly colony to move. When attacking, make sure that you’re sending enough units to prevail. You can also spend part of a colony’s population to build a turret to provide additional defense, and you’ll occasionally earn strength and speed upgrades for your army.

Presentation – The game is played from a top down view, and while not very visually intricate, the various insects (ranging from maggots to beetles) all look the part. The satisfying sound effects, including some juicy squishing noises as the bugs duke it out, are well done.

Positives – It’s very similar in concept and gameplay to great titles like Joey Betz’s Phage Wars, and StarBaron: Skirmish by Tim McCormick. There are 8 standard levels and one boss level to complete, as well as 6 performance-based achievements to unlock.

Negatives – The ability to build turrets to defend your established colonies is a neat idea, but I was able to complete all 8 of the standard levels without building one. I also experienced some minor issues with colony selection. Since each move is a two-click process, not having your first click register can result in sending troops to an unintended colony.

Why you should play itBug War is good, creepy-crawly fun. Commanding your multi-legged army in small wars of attrition is a fun and rewarding experience that's challenging enough to be compelling, without ever feeling impossible.

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