706910Freeverse's Warpack Grunts appeared in the App Store tonight for only $0.99 [App Store].

The game will have immediate appeal to fans of the Amiga game Cannon Fodder which used a very similar squad-based game design. In fact, one of the first reactions to the game acknowledges "It's a light weight Cannon Fodder. Not as deep as CF was. Still maintains the general spirit of CF, and adds to it somewhat on it's own ways."

We've spent a brief amount of time with the new release and have compiled these first impressions. The game is an action shooter in which you control the movements of your squad of fighters with a single touch control system. Tap on the screen and your squad will walk towards it. Double tap and the squad will fire with their machine guns. Additional weapons, tools and health can be found scattered around the map and each level has a very specific objective. There are 40 missions total in campaign mode as well as a Zombie Survival mode (yep, pretty much how it sounds) and the game has 4 levels of difficulty (Easy, Normal, Hard and Nnnnnaarrgh!). That last difficulty level should give you an idea of the tone of the game, itself, which is amusingly lighthearted for a war game.

Here's a developer provided video of the game:

The game is very much an action-arcade shooter so while each level seems to have its tricks and challenges, its feels like more of an old-school arcade game rather than a deep strategy game that some might have expected.

There seem to be a few valid early complaints about the game. One is that campaign mode always restarts you at the very first level. In theory, this might be expected for an arcade-type game, but the early levels are basically tutorial levels, so it's hard to get excited about playing them again and again. (Note: you can temporarily circumvent this with the inadvertent ability to practice any level.) The next potential issue is that the control system (touch screen) just doesn't seem ideal... at least not with our brief time with the game. While it's certainly passable as you put a little time into it, it just still feels a bit awkward as you are frequently obscuring your view.

The game is still quite fun and offers plenty of dramatic explosions and cartoon violence for only $0.99. So, if you're looking for arcade action or just want to feel like you have an Amiga again, Warpack Grunts seems to be a good bet.

App Store Link: Warpack Grunts, $0.99

  • lcwz

    By the looks of the game's tank level alone, it already seems to be better than most other tank games in the appstore.

  • nizy

    Man, this sure does bring back the memories of Cannon Fodder on my Amiga!

  • Cyberdude

    Being a huge Cannon Fodder fan on the Amiga, I'm sorry to say I'm disappointed.

    The biggest gripe is the controls. How on earth could they release it like this? It's close to unplayable.

    • fearless

      I'm not too happy about the controls myself. Hope they can come up with an alternative.

      I have to say though, the game looks and sounds pretty damn good!

      • acidbottle

        no concerns with the controls for me, very playable. guess im a natural ;)

    • it's friday man

      We need an Invisible Finger add-on...

  • lcwz

    By the looks of the game's tank level alone, it already seems to be better than most other tank games in the appstore.

  • nizy

    Man, this sure does bring back the memories of Cannon Fodder on my Amiga!

  • Cyberdude

    Being a huge Cannon Fodder fan on the Amiga, I'm sorry to say I'm disappointed.

    The biggest gripe is the controls. How on earth could they release it like this? It's close to unplayable.

    • fearless

      I'm not too happy about the controls myself. Hope they can come up with an alternative.

      I have to say though, the game looks and sounds pretty damn good!

      • acidbottle

        no concerns with the controls for me, very playable. guess im a natural ;)

    • it's friday man

      We need an Invisible Finger add-on...

  • rich_952000

    Umm.. Not sure about the "have to replay levels" thing. When I was done playing I pressed the home button, then when I started again I clicked resume game and started where I had left off...

    Anyway, I have liked some Freeverse/Strange Flavour titles so I decided to pick this up. A buck is a very good deal if this game has piqued your interest, at all, pick it up.

  • rich_952000

    Umm.. Not sure about the "have to replay levels" thing. When I was done playing I pressed the home button, then when I started again I clicked resume game and started where I had left off...

    Anyway, I have liked some Freeverse/Strange Flavour titles so I decided to pick this up. A buck is a very good deal if this game has piqued your interest, at all, pick it up.

  • Cyberdude

    Yeah the looks and sounds are spot on! Gameplay/controls is always the most important aspect of a game though :/

  • Cyberdude

    Yeah the looks and sounds are spot on! Gameplay/controls is always the most important aspect of a game though :/

  • TKO

    hmmm.. was gonna pick this up right away. Maybe I need to wait for better feedback. :) I'll just keep playing real cannonfodder emulated on the pc instead. :D (cruel game that it is.)

  • TKO

    hmmm.. was gonna pick this up right away. Maybe I need to wait for better feedback. :) I'll just keep playing real cannonfodder emulated on the pc instead. :D (cruel game that it is.)

  • Harry

    The game is pretty "expensive" on ipod touch considering you have to buy the OS3 in order to play it.

    • wegmans

      you should get the world's smallest violin app!

      • bob

        comment of the day!!!

  • http://touchArcade Harry

    The game is pretty "expensive" on ipod touch considering you have to buy the OS3 in order to play it.

    • wegmans

      you should get the world's smallest violin app!

      • bob

        comment of the day!!!

  • FastLaneJB

    Harry, this won't be the only game which will need OS3. There is bound to be more and more until eventually most games will need OS3. So sooner or later you'll have to install OS3 if you want to continue buying new games off the App Store.

    • Cyberdude

      But why is 3.0 required, really? Other games make the 3.0 stuff optional, that is they still work on older OS versions, you just cannot use the 3.0 stuff if you don't have it.

    • Hjj

      Here's the thing. Do I want to trade one new working app to get a bunch of broken apps in return?

      I would have upgraded on Day 1 even though I don't really need any of the new features, simply to keep up to date and try things out. The $10 is not a problem. But I don't want a bunch of glitches and hassle for something that I don't need (yet). I see the 3.0 problems thread, and I'm pleased that I don't have to be frustrated with my luxury toy.

      When there are more apps that require 3.0 that I want than apps I own that will break (without updates), then I'll upgrade. I don't expect to never do it. But I'm not going to make things frustrating for Warpack Grunts or Topple. It would have been nice if developers had considered this.

  • FastLaneJB

    Harry, this won't be the only game which will need OS3. There is bound to be more and more until eventually most games will need OS3. So sooner or later you'll have to install OS3 if you want to continue buying new games off the App Store.

    • Cyberdude

      But why is 3.0 required, really? Other games make the 3.0 stuff optional, that is they still work on older OS versions, you just cannot use the 3.0 stuff if you don't have it.

    • Hjj

      Here's the thing. Do I want to trade one new working app to get a bunch of broken apps in return?

      I would have upgraded on Day 1 even though I don't really need any of the new features, simply to keep up to date and try things out. The $10 is not a problem. But I don't want a bunch of glitches and hassle for something that I don't need (yet). I see the 3.0 problems thread, and I'm pleased that I don't have to be frustrated with my luxury toy.

      When there are more apps that require 3.0 that I want than apps I own that will break (without updates), then I'll upgrade. I don't expect to never do it. But I'm not going to make things frustrating for Warpack Grunts or Topple. It would have been nice if developers had considered this.

  • antonioj

    Besides, it´s not like Apple made things difficult for people to update their Ipod Touches for FREE....lolz....

  • antonioj

    Besides, it´s not like Apple made things difficult for people to update their Ipod Touches for FREE....lolz....

  • ryoi

    3.0 game with a 1.0 price, totally buying

  • ryoi

    3.0 game with a 1.0 price, totally buying

  • K

    I LOVED Cannon Fodder, so anything remotely close is awesome. Any suggestions on improving the controls, rather than just bagging the current implementation?

    I'd love to see rankings too for the soldiers (just like Jops and Jools) up to General, so you feel a real loss when they die.

  • K

    I LOVED Cannon Fodder, so anything remotely close is awesome. Any suggestions on improving the controls, rather than just bagging the current implementation?

    I'd love to see rankings too for the soldiers (just like Jops and Jools) up to General, so you feel a real loss when they die.

  • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

    Guys, this OS crying is really stupid.
    It's like still not wanna jump off windows XP but crying loudly, that you cannot play this or that game. If you don't wanna use the current OS, you simply cannot play some current games. It just depends on you. No one else has any fault.

    To the game. As a great fan of cannon fodder, I really love it. They put alot of humor and charm into it. The presentation is very polished and personally, I love the controls. This would be easily a six bucks game.... Get it.

    • munkee

      The only reason I'm holding off is because some games don't work properly in the OS 3.0, eg. Toki Tori (fixed), NFS, Zenonia, etc.

      I have iPhone and OS 3.0 is free for me. I can't wait to update but at the same time I still want to play those games..

      • NeoTrunks

        Zenonia works fine on my 3G S, which is, of course, running 3.0. Give it a go. I can't say for the other games, though.

  • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

    Guys, this OS crying is really stupid.
    It's like still not wanna jump off windows XP but crying loudly, that you cannot play this or that game. If you don't wanna use the current OS, you simply cannot play some current games. It just depends on you. No one else has any fault.

    To the game. As a great fan of cannon fodder, I really love it. They put alot of humor and charm into it. The presentation is very polished and personally, I love the controls. This would be easily a six bucks game.... Get it.

    • http://deleted munkee

      The only reason I'm holding off is because some games don't work properly in the OS 3.0, eg. Toki Tori (fixed), NFS, Zenonia, etc.

      I have iPhone and OS 3.0 is free for me. I can't wait to update but at the same time I still want to play those games..

      • NeoTrunks

        Zenonia works fine on my 3G S, which is, of course, running 3.0. Give it a go. I can't say for the other games, though.

  • Frogtorch

    Good morning, Warpack Grunts. Very pleased to make your acquaintance.

  • Frogtorch

    Good morning, Warpack Grunts. Very pleased to make your acquaintance.

  • Jan Hendrik

    This is really stupid. If I want to play the current games I have to buy OS 3.0, if I want to be able to play all games on my Ipod I need the old firmware. But if the developers don't want the money of iPod Touch users it's their problem and not mine.

    • bob

      your gonna be really dissapointed in the near future then lol, its called progress and if you dont, your app purchases will stop here.

  • Jan Hendrik

    This is really stupid. If I want to play the current games I have to buy OS 3.0, if I want to be able to play all games on my Ipod I need the old firmware. But if the developers don't want the money of iPod Touch users it's their problem and not mine.

    • bob

      your gonna be really dissapointed in the near future then lol, its called progress and if you dont, your app purchases will stop here.

  • Septimus

    Anyone else having this game crash no matter what when you select New Campaign or select the first mission from mission select?

    Selecting any other mission the game works fine, but actually starting a campaign from the beginning causes it to jump back to the springboard.

    • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

      What iPhone/iPod and OS are you using? Is it jailbroken? Also, have you tried both a power off/on cycle on the device after installation and re-downloading (we're seeing a few cases where the download's been corrupted).

      • Bushka

        I'm having the same problem, mine is jailbroken 1st gen iphone, not having any other problems except fo this

    • iSeptimus

      Yeah done all the usual things.

      3.0 Jailbroken. On contract, but need QiK.... game plays fine as long as I don't do the first mission.

      • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

        If you're jailbroken, contact the devs of the jailbreak software and let them know it's buggy. They'll probably be pleased to fix it.

      • iSeptimus

        Yeah, doubt much will happen. Bit of a shame, very good game. Not a huge loss, just have to select each individual level.

        If only Apple would allow access to the 3G's camera for video as well as photos I wouldn't need the Jailbreak. But $1000 to break contract and but the 3GS just isn't worth it.

  • Septimus

    Anyone else having this game crash no matter what when you select New Campaign or select the first mission from mission select?

    Selecting any other mission the game works fine, but actually starting a campaign from the beginning causes it to jump back to the springboard.

    • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

      What iPhone/iPod and OS are you using? Is it jailbroken? Also, have you tried both a power off/on cycle on the device after installation and re-downloading (we're seeing a few cases where the download's been corrupted).

      • Bushka

        I'm having the same problem, mine is jailbroken 1st gen iphone, not having any other problems except fo this

    • iSeptimus

      Yeah done all the usual things.

      3.0 Jailbroken. On contract, but need QiK.... game plays fine as long as I don't do the first mission.

      • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

        If you're jailbroken, contact the devs of the jailbreak software and let them know it's buggy. They'll probably be pleased to fix it.

      • iSeptimus

        Yeah, doubt much will happen. Bit of a shame, very good game. Not a huge loss, just have to select each individual level.

        If only Apple would allow access to the 3G's camera for video as well as photos I wouldn't need the Jailbreak. But $1000 to break contract and but the 3GS just isn't worth it.

  • Icepulse

    Anyone who whines about a $9.99 update with all those features gets ZERO sympathy from me. Are you kidding? the worst DS game on the MARKET costs TWICE that. The push functionality alone is worth the 10 bucks. I have an iPhone, and my wife has a Touch... I spent the $10 for her in a heartbeat. Now, when I send her an instant message via Beejive, she gets it every time, w/o having to have the app open. If you had the $300-$400 bucks to spend on the device, I would guess that $10 is a pittance.

  • Icepulse

    Anyone who whines about a $9.99 update with all those features gets ZERO sympathy from me. Are you kidding? the worst DS game on the MARKET costs TWICE that. The push functionality alone is worth the 10 bucks. I have an iPhone, and my wife has a Touch... I spent the $10 for her in a heartbeat. Now, when I send her an instant message via Beejive, she gets it every time, w/o having to have the app open. If you had the $300-$400 bucks to spend on the device, I would guess that $10 is a pittance.

  • spiffyone

    Yeah...I don't really get the OS whining.

    I haven't gotten 3.0 yet, but that's because:

    1. Some of the games don't work with 3.0 yet, and quite a few are games that I'm currently playing (and this, btw, is the developer's problem, not Apple's)

    2. I have a 1st "gen" touch, and am in "wait and see" mode as concerns a possible fall release of a 3rd "gen" iTouch (with iPhone 3Gs specs).

    That said, every game worth it will be 3.0 compatible or 3.0 necessary. And if not, blame the devs, not Apple.

    • Arthuria

      I'm in the same boat. 3.0 doesn't offer $10 worth of improvement to a first generation iPod touch (on the other hand 2.0 did, and I was happy to pay it.) There will definitely be a much better Touch based on the faster iPhone coming out soon, possibly at back to school time but we may have to wait until the holidays. It's possible (just a rumor) that it has built in FM transmission which would be amazing. There are also a lot of pretty solid rumors that they'll release a larger version to compete with netbooks. Either way I don't feel like paying $10 to update an old, slow and soon to be obsolete device.

      Of course I also don't care if I miss out on a few games in the meantime so I can let this one go. Yes, most games that come out in the near future will be 3.0 only... But there will also be more and more that run unacceptably if at all on the older hardware, so you may be updating for nothing that way as well.

  • spiffyone

    Yeah...I don't really get the OS whining.

    I haven't gotten 3.0 yet, but that's because:

    1. Some of the games don't work with 3.0 yet, and quite a few are games that I'm currently playing (and this, btw, is the developer's problem, not Apple's)

    2. I have a 1st "gen" touch, and am in "wait and see" mode as concerns a possible fall release of a 3rd "gen" iTouch (with iPhone 3Gs specs).

    That said, every game worth it will be 3.0 compatible or 3.0 necessary. And if not, blame the devs, not Apple.

    • Arthuria

      I'm in the same boat. 3.0 doesn't offer $10 worth of improvement to a first generation iPod touch (on the other hand 2.0 did, and I was happy to pay it.) There will definitely be a much better Touch based on the faster iPhone coming out soon, possibly at back to school time but we may have to wait until the holidays. It's possible (just a rumor) that it has built in FM transmission which would be amazing. There are also a lot of pretty solid rumors that they'll release a larger version to compete with netbooks. Either way I don't feel like paying $10 to update an old, slow and soon to be obsolete device.

      Of course I also don't care if I miss out on a few games in the meantime so I can let this one go. Yes, most games that come out in the near future will be 3.0 only... But there will also be more and more that run unacceptably if at all on the older hardware, so you may be updating for nothing that way as well.

  • cookiemonster

    hmm, sounds like a lot of complaining about the controls. i thought this looked like something worth picking up but no game can over come a bad control scheme

  • cookiemonster

    hmm, sounds like a lot of complaining about the controls. i thought this looked like something worth picking up but no game can over come a bad control scheme

  • http://www.freeverse.com Hippieman

    The controls take about 2 mins to get used to. The entire game is designed around them so they don't work to your disadvantage.

    There is actual strategy involved in the game, you can't just always run and gun every situation.

  • http://www.freeverse.com Hippieman

    The controls take about 2 mins to get used to. The entire game is designed around them so they don't work to your disadvantage.

    There is actual strategy involved in the game, you can't just always run and gun every situation.

  • 5duc29

    I find it much easier to control with two thumbs on the top left and right of the screen, playing the phone with the side screen. I mean playing horizontally, what ever it's called.

  • 5duc29

    I find it much easier to control with two thumbs on the top left and right of the screen, playing the phone with the side screen. I mean playing horizontally, what ever it's called.

  • rich_952000

    Warpack Grunts, for $.99 = must buy.

    I am easily confused, and yet the controls work easily for me:D

  • rich_952000

    Warpack Grunts, for $.99 = must buy.

    I am easily confused, and yet the controls work easily for me:D

  • Dark NRG

    Well, I bought it, and I don't have os 3 on my 1st gen iTouch.

    So, it doesn't work.

    So, I have to get os 3.

    SO, the game is actually $10.99 for me, bc I would NOT be gettin os3 for a good a good bit, since I like how everything works properly right now.
    Its only been a year, but I remember unlike SOME waiting 7 hours for sync before 2.1!!!

  • Dark NRG

    Well, I bought it, and I don't have os 3 on my 1st gen iTouch.

    So, it doesn't work.

    So, I have to get os 3.

    SO, the game is actually $10.99 for me, bc I would NOT be gettin os3 for a good a good bit, since I like how everything works properly right now.
    Its only been a year, but I remember unlike SOME waiting 7 hours for sync before 2.1!!!

  • Arthuria

    It does say 3.0 required at the app store, so we should all probably start watching for that if we don't update.

    I do think when you buy a game using the app store app on the device, it should check to make sure you meet the OS requirements to download it. That's probably never going to happen though.

  • Arthuria

    It does say 3.0 required at the app store, so we should all probably start watching for that if we don't update.

    I do think when you buy a game using the app store app on the device, it should check to make sure you meet the OS requirements to download it. That's probably never going to happen though.

  • Septimus

    The controls are fine and pretty easy to pick up. Just a little down that is is the only game that I own (out of 60+) that has issues with my jailbroken 3.0. Espescially when really hefty games like Real Racing, nfsu, tiger woods et al all work fine.

  • Septimus

    The controls are fine and pretty easy to pick up. Just a little down that is is the only game that I own (out of 60+) that has issues with my jailbroken 3.0. Espescially when really hefty games like Real Racing, nfsu, tiger woods et al all work fine.

  • yacoub

    Thanks Arn, good review!

  • yacoub

    Thanks Arn, good review!

  • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

    I'd modify that. It's the only game your jailbreak has issues with (so far). Grunts is written to be fully compliant with Apple's 3.0 APIs, which the jailbreak software or something installed with it obviously isn't. It's not a fault of the game, just something wrong with your iPhone.

  • http://www.strangeflavour.com Zwilnik

    I'd modify that. It's the only game your jailbreak has issues with (so far). Grunts is written to be fully compliant with Apple's 3.0 APIs, which the jailbreak software or something installed with it obviously isn't. It's not a fault of the game, just something wrong with your iPhone.

  • RattyUK

    To all those children moaning about paying the 9.99 bucks to upgrade to 3.0 get over it. As a developer I paid $99 for the same privilege. When the first beta came out it made my ipod pretty much unusable but it has progressed in that it is worth every penny even at the $99 price.

    The point being is that most of you who are moaning about this app should just grow up. The developers have obviously put a lot of time and effort into the game and have obviously gone with 3.0 to push the most out of it.

    Stop being such penny pinchers and upgrade already or just be quiet. In other words put up or shut up.

    To those of you who have jailbroken your phones. Tough. You get what you pay for.

  • RattyUK

    To all those children moaning about paying the 9.99 bucks to upgrade to 3.0 get over it. As a developer I paid $99 for the same privilege. When the first beta came out it made my ipod pretty much unusable but it has progressed in that it is worth every penny even at the $99 price.

    The point being is that most of you who are moaning about this app should just grow up. The developers have obviously put a lot of time and effort into the game and have obviously gone with 3.0 to push the most out of it.

    Stop being such penny pinchers and upgrade already or just be quiet. In other words put up or shut up.

    To those of you who have jailbroken your phones. Tough. You get what you pay for.