By Mike Riley on Sun, 08/29/2010
With over 250,000 titles currently available in the Apple App's Store, it can be a challenge finding the diamonds among the cruft. And since the games category bulks the majority of App Store products, this search can be especially daunting. However, once in a while a game title captures just the right amount of immediate gratification and strategic finesse that gives it an enduring, addictive quality. Does No, Human have this necessary spark? Read on time find out.
The premise of No, Human is elementary. The universe (characterized by an angular monster that reminded me of the head of a angry and demented version of H.R. Pufnstuf), has decided to attack space exploring humans by hurling space rocks at the human's spaceships and stations.
The game progressives through 50 levels of puzzles that require just the right kind of directional finger flick to send one or more stationary rocks toward the intended target to be destroyed. Think of mini-golf meets billiard balls and you have a sense of how the game objects interact with each other.
Some of the levels are simple aim and flick fests, while the latter stages require the right amount of force applied to the intended direction of the space rock around obstacles that either attract or repel the rock. These gravity wells need to be perfected to succeed. The other important aspect to success in No, Human is the mastery of directional flicking and force needed to apply to the space rock's trajectory. Even after completing the game twice, I still haven't been able to send rocks to their intended destinations 100% of the time. I attribute this to the diminutive size of the game objects coupled with the challenging ability to mechanically gauge your intended direction and flicking force.
The graphics are spartan and the play field is very angular. The very minimal story is silly but in a playful, innocent way. The game does not feature any musical accompaniment which is startling apparent given the few clinks and clanks of the rock striking other rocky surfaces. Fortunately, the explosion that reverberate when the level is solved is deep and satisfying.
Overall, No, Human is an entertaining and creative game that kept me playing late into the evening with a "just one more level" addiction. It is also a universal application, running beautifully on the iPhone as well as featuring high resolution goodness on the iPad. However, given how quickly one can beat all 50 levels coupled with the minimal sound effects, the game is more equivalent to a $0.99 game than that $1.99 asking price.
Product: No, Human
Price: $1.99 US
Rating: 3/5 stars