A couple of weeks ago we took an exclusive hands-on look at the puzzle platformer GravBot [Free] from Team Phobic, the developer responsible for games like Bounce On [$1.99/Lite], Bounce On 2: Drallo’s Demise [$3.99/Lite], and Tunnel Shoot [99¢]. Earlier tonight, the game went live in the US App Store. GravBot is free to download and initially comes with 12 levels. These levels ease you into the game mechanics and give you a great taste of what GravBot has to offer. If you like what’s contained in this glorified demo, then there are two additional level packs available as in-app purchase. Each of these level packs contains 20 increasingly difficult levels, and are 99¢ apiece. Here is an excerpt from our hands-on preview talking about the gameplay in GravBot:
In GravBot, you’ll play as a tiny robot who must collect all of the batteries on each perilous level. In order to accomplish this, you can spin the entire level either 90 degrees left or right or entirely upside down to change the direction of gravity. Your robot can travel left and right on its single tire, and will fall towards whichever way happens to be down at the time. Levels are filled with hazards like spikes, enemies, and lasers which will kill instantly if not avoided. The batteries can be tricky to get to, and a color-coded system of trapdoors, elevators, and various other obstacles will need to be triggered by switching a lever or pushing blocks onto buttons – all in the name of snagging every last battery on a given level.
While just completing each level is sufficiently challenging and fun, the real hook toGravBot is trying to obtain gold medals for each one. The game keeps track of how many times you switched gravity to complete a level, with bronze/silver/gold medals awarded for using it efficiently. What is really satisfying is when you figure out a way to win gold using fewer gravity switches than is required. Due to the physics engine in the game, you can sometimes make it to a hard to reach area without changing the gravity and instead gliding through the air or just barely catching the edge of a platform and hanging on.
There’s really not anything I don’t like about GravBot, and it has become one of my most favorite puzzle games that I’ve played on the iPhone. The graphical style is cute, with support for Retina Display, and the GravBot robot exudes a ton of personality in the game. The levels are all really cleverly designed, and there’s a tremendous amount of replay value going back to each one and trying to complete it in the most efficient way possible, earning medals and competing on the Plus+ leaderboards as you go. There’s no risk in downloading the game for free and trying out the initial 12 levels, and the IAP level packs offer a great value for money if you’re looking for more. In fact, I would love to see some additional level packs released down the line sometime. Players in our forums are enjoying the game as well, and it appears that the talented folks at Team Phobic have another hit on their hands with GravBot.