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Review: Gun Range - Say Hello To My Little Friend!

August 14, 2010



Ngmoco, creators of the FPS “Eliminate Pro” have brought us the spin-off, Eliminate: Gun Range. Gun Range places you inside a virtual firing range where effectively shooting the given targets unlocks bigger and badder weapons. The targets vary as you progress through the game and really work your hand-eye coordination. An iPhone 4 exclusive at first, the latest version of Gun Range now supports all iPhone and iPod Touch devices and also adds downloadable content through the use of “In App Purchase”. Please Note: This review is for the iPhone 4 version of the game.


gunrange_5The iPhone 4 version of the game offers Ngmoco’s trademark “G-scope“ technology. It’s basically the 3D physics engine driven by the new Gyroscope in the iPhone 4. The gyro takes the gameplay to a whole new level by allowing you to aim your gun by holding the iPhone, while naturally turning it to move the weapon; think Wii MotionPlus. Gun Range offers 12 weapons in phenomenal detail, as well as realistic sound that are both loud and crisp. The graphics look beautiful on my iP4’s Retina display. You start off with an M60 and have the option to unlock other guns using the credits you earn in each stage. The new update adds In App Purchase, which offers the UMP45 and M249 machine gun for $0.99; for the money you also unlock all of the other guns and add new challenges. There are 3 firing ranges to let loose in. Not an impressive number, but you get up to 144 target-shooting challenges to master. The shooting ranges look amazing, and pull off the dim lighting effects and the echo of the gun shots really well! Previous gen iPhone owners can now get in on the action as well, though it is limited. Instead of the natural shooting range experience that the iPhone 4 version provides, you are limited to touch aiming controls. This is done by sliding your finger on the iPhone’s screen to move the direction of your gun and tapping on the screen to shoot.


The Good: gunrange_3I was anxious to see what the iPhone 4 Gyroscope could do. As I selected the M60 and started the round, it felt kind of awkward. But that’s because I was so used to the accelerometer that I had been using in previous iPhone games. Once you get the feel for it down, it totally makes sense. You get to hold the iPhone 4 as if it were your gun, and move it to the direction you want to shoot. The game recognizes your movement and adjusts the environment to make it as seamless and natural as possible. To shoot, you simply tap anywhere on the screen; you can hold your finger on the screen for some Automatic goodness (Scarface anyone?). Gun Range does not fall short at providing a challenge. The targets get pretty vigorous as you progress through the stages and unlocking all the guns requires lots of skill. Luckily, for $0.99 you can unlock all of them in case you get stuck. The game also provides real world military specs for each weapon. You are able to compare ratings for the following attributes: Damage, Rate of Fire, Reload, Accuracy, and Magazine. You can use this data to put together a strategy for each stage, as the target AI greatly varies as you get farther into the game. The Bad: Gun Range is a great attempt to show off what the Gyroscope can do. However, once the introduction has been made, the excitement quicklygunrange_4 wears thin. Even with the choice of 12 ultra realistic weapons and 144 challenges, it gets pretty repetitive. With only 3 firing ranges, it’s bound to get old. The object of the game is simply not intriguing enough to keep you playing. Sure, you earn credits to unlock new guns and challenges, but you’re taking the action to the same 3 ranges throughout the whole game. It kind of feels like you’re going in circles and it does not add much to motivate you to continue.

The Verdict:

Gun Range is perfect for showing off what your phone can do. When people ask to look at my new iPhone 4, I always fire this puppy up and it never fails to impress. It offers a great physics engine, high definition graphics and it's pretty fun for a quick round. Unfortunately, it won’t be long until it feels like a tech-demo. If you're on the market for a shooter that will keep you glued for months, then look elsewhere. If you’re curious to see what the Gyroscope can do and maybe kill some time while at it, Gun Range is definitely worth it.

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