iPhone App Video Review: Ant Raid

by Andrew Koziara

After its exclusive iPad release in July of last year, developers Prank have brought Ant Raid to the iPhone! It's a real-time strategy game with an extra dose of quirkiness. It's a bit low on classic strategic elements, opting instead to be more frantic and action-based. The premise is endlessly amusing, the graphics and music are well done, and there is a ton of content to enjoy with this one.

So while various kinds of bugs are hanging out and having a good time, an exterminator comes and spreads his toxins all over the place. Every creepy crawler except the ants become zombified, and they are quite hungry. What proceeds is an epic quest in which a single colony of ants warns the rest of the insect world and saves it from total annihilation, or something.

Each level has your base in the center with your available soldier ants circling the outside. Touching the screen will create a highlighting circle that you can drag over ants to select them. Zombified snails, bees, worms and beetles will attack from all directions, and you have to send swarms of ants to stop them. Each creature acts differently, and requires a slightly different strategy to take down. You also have several power-ups available to you. After killing enough green zombies, you can activate some godly power in which you tap on any bug to utterly squash them. Killing enough red bugs will let you turn your ants into faster, stronger and more aggressive soldiers that will automatically defend their border. Enough blue bugs will let you make your ants invincible. Activating the red and blue powers at the same time result in gold ants, which hold the properties of both and are awesome.

Aside from the four chapters of the story mode with fifteen levels each, you also have four survival maps and several challenges to play through. You get a lot of bang for your buck with this app, although the game isn't perfect. Many levels are just brutally difficult and battles can feel very repetitive. It probably won't appeal to hardcore strategy fans, as it's really very basic and more action oriented. I thoroughly enjoyed every minute. The graphics are done well and I really enjoyed the comic book cut-scenes of the story. Game Center achievements and leaderboards are supported too. You can get this new iPhone version of the game for one dollar, or you can get the iPad version for three. There are demo versions of each to try out as well, so at least give those a shot and see what you think.

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