Chicken Raid is a brand new game by FDG Entertainment that will have users slicing and smashing their way to physics-puzzle glory. The graphics are clean and playful, the puzzles are fun and evolving, and no, this isn’t a new twist on Angry Birds-mostly.
As a first note, I like the training levels in this game. A lot of games spend too long trying to get through control schemes and gameplay explanations, bogging the player down in endless training blurbs. This one sends you through about 3 training levels introducing obstacles, styles and techniques. But it relies on you to learn about new features in subsequent levels, which is something that doesn’t hinder gameplay.
The object of this game-with which I’m sure most mobile gamers are familiar-is to destroy all of the chickens, eggs and bonus objects on the screen. Players do so by slicing through wooden boards or crushing objects made of ice. The birds (and other objects) are sitting on (or under) the planks, so the game’s “gravity” system crushes or smashes the chickens. There are different types of chickens that need to be killed in different ways-some of them must be dropped from a certain height, while others must be crushed from above. There are power-ups like TNT boxes and additional player-activated explosives that are earned as the game progresses. Finally, there are bonus items to grab on the screen for bonus points; smash treasure chests and collect the contents. It’s a fun, active way to increase your score separate from just crushing chickens (never thought I’d say that sentence).
To give an opinion on this game without referencing the wildly popular Angry Birds franchise would be a big mistake. The game’s style, graphics and even the playful ways in which the chickens react to falling objects are all reminiscent of the slingshot-launching original. But Chicken Raid’s differences are where it truly shines. I’m not a big fan of Angry Birds, mainly because I don’t find that I have a lot of control over the physics when launching birds from a distance (and perhaps that’s the point). But this game is a decidedly more controlled approach. You must assess the situations, figure out which planks to destroy in order set off chain reactions to destroy all the birds with as few taps as possible. I love the physics, the chickens have fun mannerisms and the levels get harder and harder. It’s one of those iPhone games that make you think without realizing you’re doing it, and I like that
I’m actually hard-pressed to find negatives in the game itself. Developers clearly spent a lot of time in the design phase to assess and remove bugs-something that I can’t necessarily say for some Angry Birds titles. I think the shortcomings fall within the genre itself. If you like action- and story-based games, this really isn’t for you. It requires a lot of planning to achieve high scores, and some gamers prefer a more casual experience. But, it’s a really fun game and I’m impressed by the earned-powerup system that rewards players for getting better and better. All-in-all it’s really well-done, especially for such a new game. Grab it now and be one of the first, because it’s definitely going to get popular.