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Review: Gun Builder

May 21, 2010


Gun Builder gives the gun lover the opportunity to play with and customize four different guns without the expense, paperwork and gunsmithing skills required with the real thing. You select your gun, customize it and save it to your gun rack. From there you can take it to the "range" for some shooting fun.


Gun builder lets you select from the ever popular Desert Eagle, the Heckler & Koch MP5 submachine gun, the M-16 (and variants) as well as a tactical shotgun. You can customize these weapons in a variety of ways including engraving, finishes, scopes, lights, grips, stocks etc. Gun builder lets you save one of each of your creations to your "Gun Rack" so you can admire your creations as well as use them on the "Shooting Range". The shooting range is where you get to fire your customized guns and experience the thrill of shooting some guns that most of us could only dream of owning.

The Breakdown

The Good Gun Builder let's you create customized versions of guns that are quite over-the-top. Designs you'd never see in reality become possible with this app. Using a simple tabbed draw-like menu system you can create a tiger-striped Desert Eagle with leopard print grips engraved with a short name or initials. Why would you want to? Because with Gun Builder you can, and it's fun to see what outrageous or cool combinations you can come up with. You can create a pink shotgun. You can create a customized M-16 or configure it to be an M-4 carbine. All of these options are available to you in the "Workshop". The system for creating your creations couldn't be easier or much more intuitive to use. Once you've tweaked your creations you select "Save to gun rack" from the bottom pop-up menu and your gun is saved. Selecting "Gun Rack" from the main menu takes you to your collection of saved guns; one of each type. When you select one of your guns from the gun rack the gun is shown enlarged all by itself on a black background. From here taping the screen "fires" the gun. On the bottom right of the screen is an indicator showing how many rounds of ammo are left. There is animation of the gun action firing, ejecting the spent case, and the muzzle flash as it fires. Reloading is accomplished by shaking your iPhone. As expected gun sounds accompany the on-screen action. The Bad Unfortunately the minuses far outweigh the positives with Gun Builder. For starters, there aren't enough guns. One pistol? One shotgun? Two rifles? There needs to be more variety in the models of guns across the board. There also needs to be a way to store more than just one customized version of each gun. What fun is it to come up with different variations of a gun and not be able to save them all? The shooting range is hardly a range at all. It consists of the gun you selected on a black background. There are no targets or anything to shoot at. You just have a side view of your customized gun. Tapping anywhere on the screen makes it fire! That's right the trigger doesn't do anything! The sounds and animation are far from realistic. None of the gun controls work; the safety is always in the fire position, you can't eject the magazine or rack the slide and reloads consist of just shaking your iPhone to reload. Even the image next to the number of rounds left in the gun is unrepresentative of the ammo for that particular gun. Very unrealistic and disappointing to say the least.

The Verdict

Does Gun Builder have potential? Yes, it does, but it will take some work on the part of the developer to get it where it needs to be. Is it fun? For a few minutes it is but there just isn't that much here. As it stands now, with other better gun applications in the App Store, it is hard to recommend Gun Builder even for the modest $.99 it costs.