By Eric Pankoke on Mon, 07/01/2013
Have you ever wondered what a muppet’s nightmare might be like? I’m betting it would look something like WeeWaa RockOn ($0.99). This game is bizarre, challenging, and might make you want to pull your hair out; but at the same time it is actually kind of fun. The biggest drawback to this mobile game is its lack of variety. Well, that and the fact that for a game based around music, the music isn’t all that great.
The visuals are the highlight of WeeWaa. The 3D engine is put to good use with detailed backgrounds and slick character designs. And tell me you can look at the Tall Purple Guy and not think of the Muppets! The sound effects are decent, as is the music. I’m a bit disappointed, though, as the focus of this game is using music to thwart the bad guys. I would have expected a more interesting soundtrack since music is a key element of the story.
In the game, you play a creature known as a WeeWaa, and it is your job to save the village from the evil Groompas, who aim to banish music forever. You have absolutely no control over your WeeWaa, however. Instead, you must pluck the Groompas from the ground or out of the air and toss them into nets or bash them back into the ground. If you are feeling particularly feisty or simply want to complete certain missions, you can also toss them into the eager mouths of these tall purple creatures simply known as the “tall purple guy.” In a way, this is like some weird mash up between an endless runner and whack-a-mole in reverse.
Just like you would get with any endless runner, there are missions to complete along the way to keep you busy. While they never seem to run out, in reality, there's only 10 or 15 different ones that keep recycling. If nothing else, keep the objective the same (example: feed X number of Groompas to the Tall Purple Guy) and just vary the actual X value. You also can collect coins along the way so you can buy new outfits, guitars, and power ups. However, even that can be frustrating because the coins go where they want to go, and since you are on a fixed path and can't control the WeeWaa directly anyway, you can’t “run off the path” to grab the errant loot. This is especially annoying when you get the big bonus coins that pop out of the ground like Groompas. You can grab and drag them, but I can’t figure out how to get the WeeWaa to pick them up.
Speaking of frustrating, the interaction needs a bit of work. Basically, you tap and hold the Groompas to get control of them. Then, you drag and ultimately let go to flick them where you want them to go. This sounds simple enough, but there seems to be no discernable accuracy to the game whatsoever. Don’t misunderstand me, because I have been able to manage my way through it, but given that a majority of the missions revolve around throwing things in nets or feeding the Tall Purple Guy, it would make me much happier if I felt I could accomplish these tasks with any sort of consistency. I’m not great at action games, mind you, but I often feel I’m just fumbling around in this one.
WeeWaa RockOn is a good game with lots of promise. The kids will certainly enjoy it, and even as an adult, you should find it somewhat satisfying. However, it would be great if you had more control over throwing the groompas, and ultimately, the game just needs some more variety. I certainly hope the developers follow through with adding additional levels, and with any luck the next set will come with new enemies and will feel different than the existing version.
Overall Score: 7/10