Trending March 2024 # Gonzo Action Game The Executive Is Ign’s Free Game Of The Month # Suggested April 2024 # Top 9 Popular

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So you want to be the CEO of a trillion dollar mining company that has been infiltrated by werewolves? Look no further than The Executive by Riverman Media, a title unlike any other mobile game on the market.

The Executive, normally a $4.99 download from the App Store, has just gone free via IGN’s ongoing Free Game of the Month promotion, marking the first time the game has hone free since its July 2024 debut.

Where is this promotion available?

The promo codes for The Executive are available on a first-come, first-served basis to any gamer in the following 57 countries: United States, Algeria, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil Canada, Chad, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and Vietnam.

How can I redeem this offer?

Step 1: To grab your free download, first visit IGN’s promo page using Safari on your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad or Mac.

Step 2: Now tap on the red Get Free Game button below the splash graphics.

Step 3: Your promo code should appear on the screen. Tap it to redeem your free copy of The Executive.

Tip: Alternatively, manually paste the code into the Redeem section of the App Store on the iPhone, iPod touch or iPad, or iTunes on Mac and Windows PCs.

How can I bypass regional restrictions?

If your country isn’t included in this promotion, feel free to use an anonymous proxy web tool such as SmartHide Online Anonymizer, which doesn’t cost a dime and can help you bypass regional restrictions.

Choose the US Anonymizer option on the SmartHide webpage, paste the IGN promo URL into the text field and tap the Begin Browsing button.

SmartHide should fool IGN into believing you were visiting their website from the United States and allow you to claim your free download. If you get the message that this game is redeemable only through a US App Store account, just create yourself one to download this freebie.

Who the heck is Riverman?

Riverman Media is two brothers, Jacob and Paul Stevens, who have dedicated their lives to the art of 2D game making.

The Executive highlights

The Executive will have you fighting the werewolves over the course of 120 hand-crafted levels to save your company and your city.

120 levels, hand-crafted one pixel at a time. No randomly generated endless filler.

Dozens of abilities and skills to learn

Battle enemies and execute stunts in every level

Over 50 unique enemies, each with their own intelligence, strengths, and weaknesses

Invest in your mining company and earn money continuously

12 Menacing bosses that will require your strategy and skill to defeat

Universal app: purchase it once, play forever on iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch

12 Challenging achievements

High-definition Retina graphics for all supported devices, Retina HD graphics on iPhone 6 Plus

Built on Riverman’s proprietary animation system, the game animates large, hand-drawn 2D sprites with an unprecedented amount of smoothness and detail.

Check out the teaser trailer for The Executive below.

If you can’t see the embedded video, watch it on YouTube.

As mentioned, the game features a high-speed combat system, timing-based running, platforming, a bunch of moves and upgrades and a simple mining company simulation for earning money.

“The fighting engine evokes a cross between Street Fighter II and Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, with controls designed from scratch to be ideal for touch screens,” Riverman boasts.

The platforming segments require precise timing, similar to Elite Beat Agents but with an emphasis on visual timing instead of musical rhythm.

“Both of these mechanics are brought together by the SP bar, which allows you to execute gesture-based special moves like flame kicks, health restoration, and even morphing your character’s arm into a silver spike to impale foes,” as per release notes.

Availability

The Executive, a 432-megabyte download, requires an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad with iOS 7.1 or later. The game is localized in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.

You're reading Gonzo Action Game The Executive Is Ign’s Free Game Of The Month

The Game Of Increasing R

This article was published as a part of the Data Science Blogathon.

Introduction

After building a Machine Learning model, the next and very crucial step is to evaluate the model performance on the unseen or test data and see how good our model is against a benchmark model.

The evaluation metric to be used would depend upon the type of problem you are trying to solve —whether it is a supervised, unsupervised problem, or a mix of these (like semi-supervised), and if it is a classification or a regression task.

In this article, we will discuss two important evaluation metrics used for regression problem statements and we will try to find the key difference between them and learn why these metrics are preferred over Mean Squared Error (MSE) and Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE) for a regression problem statement.

Some Important questions which we are trying to understand in this article are as follows:

👉 The Game of increasing R-squared (R2)

👉 Why we go for adjusted-R2?

 👉 When to use which from R2 and adjusted-R2?

Let’s first understand what exactly is R Squared?

R-squared, which sometimes is also known as the coefficient of determination, defines the degree to which the variance in the dependent variable (target or response) can be explained by the independent variable (features or predictors).

Let us understand this with an example — say the R2 value for a regression model having  Income as an Independent variable (predictor) and, Expenditure as a dependent variable (response) comes out to be 0.76.

– In general terms, this means that 76% of the variation in the dependent variable is explained by the independent variables.

But for our defined regression problem statement, it can be understood as,

👉 76% variability in expenditure is associated or related with the regression equation and 24% variations are due to other factors.

👉76% variability in expenditure is explained by its linear relationship with income while 24% variations are uncounted for.

👉 76% variation in expenditure due to variation in income while we can’t say anything about the 24% variations. God knows better about it.

Image Source: link

Important points about R Squared 

👉 Ideally, we would want the independent variables to explain the complete variations in the target variable. In that scenario, the R2 value would be equal to 1. Thus we can say that the higher the R2 value, the better is our model.

👉 In simple terms, the higher the R2, the more variation is explained by your input variables, and hence better is your model. Also, the R2 would range from [0,1]. Here is the formula for calculating R2–

The R2 is calculated by dividing the sum of squares of residuals from the regression model (given by SSRES) by the total sum of squares of errors from the average model (given by SSTOT) and then subtracting it from 1.

Fig. Formula for Calculating R2

Image Source: link

Drawbacks of using R Squared :

👉 Every time if we add Xi (independent/predictor/explanatory) to a regression model, R2 increases even if the independent variable is insignificant for our regression model.

👉 R2 assumes that every independent variable in the model helps to explain variations in the dependent variable. In fact, some independent variables don’t help to explain the dependent variable. In simple words, some variables don’t contribute to predicting the dependent variable.

👉 So, if we add new features to the data (which may or may not be useful), the R2 value for the model would either increase or remain the same but it would never decrease.

So, to overcome all these problems, we have adjusted-R2 which is a slightly modified version of R2.

Let’s understand what is Adjusted R2?

👉 Similar to R2,  Adjusted-R2 measures the proportion of variations explained by only those independent variables that really help in explaining the dependent variable.

👉 Unlike R2, the Adjusted-R2 punishes for adding such independent variables that don’t help in predicting the dependent variable (target).

Let us mathematically understand how this feature is accommodated in Adjusted-R2. Here is the formula for adjusted R2

Fig. Formula for Calculating adjusted-R2

Image Source: link

Let’s take an example to understand the values changes of these metrics in a Regression model

For Example,

      Independent Variable                    R2              Adjusted-R2

                   X1                  67.8                   67.1

                   X2                  88.3                   85.6

                   X3                  92.5                   82.7

In this example for a regression problem statement, we observed that the independent variable X3 is insignificant or it doesn’t contribute to explain the variation in the dependent variable. Hence, adjusted-R2 is decreased because the involvement of in-significant variable harms the predicting power of other variables that are already included in the model and declared significant.

 R2 vs Adjusted-R2

👉 Adjusted-R2 is an improved version of R2.

👉 Adjusted-R2 includes the independent variable in the model on merit.

👉 Adjusted-R2 < R2

👉 R2 includes extraneous variations whereas adjusted-R2 includes pure variations.

👉 The difference between R2 and adjusted-R2 is only the degrees of freedom.

The Game of Increasing R2

Sometimes researchers tried their best to increase R2 in every possible way.

👉 One way to include more and more explanatory (independent) variables in the model because:

R2 is an increasing function of the number of independent variables i.e, with the inclusion of one more independent variable R2 is likely to increase or at least will not decrease.

When to use which?

Comparing models using R2

Comparing two models just based on R2 is dangerous as,

👉 Models having a different number of independent variables may have an equal value of R2.

👉 Total sample size and respective degrees of freedom are ignored.

Hence, there is a likelihood that one would choose the wrong model.

Problem solved by adjusted-R2

To compare two different models, or choose the best model, the adjusted-R2 is used because:

👉 It is adjusted for the respective degree of freedom.

👉 It takes into account the total sample size and number of independent variables.

👉 It is not an increasing function of the number of independent variables.

👉 It only increases if newly independent variables have an impact on the dependent variable.

CONCLUSION:

So, concluding the discussion we say that,

👉 R2 can be used to access the goodness of fit of a single model whereas,

👉Adjusted-R2 is used to compare two models and to see the real impact of newly added independent variables.

👉 Adjusted-R2 should be used while selecting important predictors for the regression model.

End Notes

Thanks for reading!

Please feel free to contact me on Linkedin, Email.

About the author Chirag Goyal

Currently, I am pursuing my Bachelor of Technology (B.Tech) in Computer Science and Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Jodhpur(IITJ). I am very enthusiastic about Machine learning, Deep Learning, and Artificial Intelligence.

The media shown in this article on Top Machine Learning Libraries in Julia are not owned by Analytics Vidhya and is used at the Author’s discretion. 

Related

Is Buying The Most Expensive Game Consoles Worth It?

In these economically trying times we all have a need for entertainment, but also a need to be frugal. With the release of a new generation of rather expensive game consoles, it’s fair to ask what you get for your hard-earned money.

Should you buy a next-generation console or stick with something older and more affordable? Is buying the most expensive game consoles worth it?

Table of Contents

Putting All the Options on the Table

Which consoles are we talking about here? The “most expensive” consoles mentioned in the title of this article are the PlayStation 5 (with disc drive) and the Xbox Series X. Both of these consoles cost $500. At least they do in key territories before sales tax is added. That’s a lot of moolah!

Then there are cheaper options from the same generation of consoles. There’s the PlayStation Digital Edition, which lacks a disc drive, for $399. On the Xbox side of things there’s the Xbox Series S for $299. The Series S also lacks a disc drive and has a much less powerful graphics chip than its more expensive brother, the Series X.

Next, we have the (now) last-generation console choices. The PlayStation 4, Playstation 4 Pro, Xbox One S and Xbox One X. The PS4 Pro and Xbox One X are mid-generation upgrades to these older consoles that improved the graphical power somewhat.

We’re not going to include the Nintendo Switch here, because it’s not really competing in the same space as the other two consoles. If you’re wondering whether to get the Switch or the Switch Lite, check out the Biggest Differences Between Nintendo Switch Lite and Nintendo Switch.

Understanding the Benefits of the Latest Consoles

What’s the big deal with these new expensive consoles anyway? Here’s a summary:

Super-fast solid-state storage for short load times and new game design possibilities.

Much faster CPUs. making 60 frames per second the new norm, with 120 frames per second possible in some titles (with a compatible TV!).

Significantly better GPUs, allowing for 4K or near-4K image quality and ray tracing.

Backwards compatibility with previous generation games, as well as significant enhancements to those older titles.

If you buy one of these new top-end consoles, you’re getting crisper graphics, much smoother motion and improvements to games you already own and love. Apart from the cost, it’s all positive from a gaming perspective!

Now that all the options are on the table and you know what splashing some cash will get you, let’s go through each major decision in turn.

Xbox or PlayStation?

Both Sony and Microsoft have pretty compelling gaming platforms and there’s no such thing as a universally better choice. For an in-depth comparison between these two console brands, have a look at Playstation vs Xbox: How To Choose What’s Right For You.

In the end, this is a personal choice that depends on what types of games you like to play, what your friends are playing, which online service you like more and which brand speaks to you. It also matters whether you care about taking your existing game collection into the next generation or not. 

For most people, comparing the two brands of consoles isn’t all that useful since you’re unlikely to be choosing from a neutral position. What’s more important is the choice of making the jump to the most expensive model for your chosen brand or not.

Our Recommendation: Listen to your heart.

PlayStation 5 Digital vs Playstation 5 With Disc Drive?

When it comes to the PlayStation 5, there are two models to choose from. Both are identical in every way, except that the Digital Edition lacks a BluRay drive and costs $100 less, so you make no sacrifices in terms of game fidelity or next-generation performance.

Sounds like a good deal, right? Well that $100 “saving” might actually be a bad deal for you and a great deal for Sony. By saying no thanks to the drive, you give Sony total control over video game pricing. 

You lose access to retail price competition, used games, PS4 disc-based games and the ability to play 4K BluRay movies. We don’t think these sacrifices are worth the $100 saving. One could easily make that money back and more through price savings. However, if you’re sure that these specific sacrifices are ones you can live with, then the Digital Edition is a more affordable option in the short term.

Our Recommendation: Buy the standard PlayStation 5

Series S or Series X?

The Series S is a full $200 less expensive than the Series X flagship console. However, unlike the two PS5 models, you’re giving up much more than just a disc drive. The Series S has a (slightly) slower CPU and only one third of the GPU power. However, the Series S targets (up to) a 1440p rendering resolution. It’s best to think of it as a 1080p console to avoid disappointment. 

If you have a 1080p television and aren’t planning on upgrading to 4K any time soon, the Series S is a fine choice. Losing disc access creates similar issues as it does on the discless PS5. However, Microsoft does have its Game Pass service, which goes a long way to making up for that.

You can play all the same games as the Series S. You get the same backwards compatibility support as well. Games should play at the same frame rates as the Series X as well. The main differences will be a lower resolution and perhaps slightly dialled-back graphical settings.

The choice here really is based on budget. The Series X is clearly and objectively superior. The difference is undoubtedly worth $200. So if your budget allows for it, get the more expensive device.

Our Recommendation: Buy the Series X if you have the choice.

Sticking With the Last Generation

If you own a PS4, PS4 Pro, One S or One X you shouldn’t feel too much pressure to upgrade. If you’re happy with the resolution and frame rates of these consoles you can still expect new games to be available on your console for a year or two.

If you don’t own any of these more expensive game consoles, the choice becomes harder. It’s better to buy the latest generation console now if you’re a new buyer. Since you’ll be set for the next five years. If you buy one of the outgoing consoles, even at a good price, you’re going to want a replacement much sooner.

Thanks to the backwards compatibility of both the PS5 and Xbox Series consoles, it makes less sense to hold onto their predecessors. While visual quality on the outgoing machines is still fine, they suffer from poor framerates. Which is perhaps the largest and most immediate quality of life improvement.

Are the most expensive game consoles worth the asking price? Absolutely. Are they worth it to you? That’s a different question. We think the long list of gameplay experience improvements over the cheaper generation of consoles is substantial. Not to mention that you’ll have a hard time building a gaming PC with these specifications. Then again, a gaming PC might actually not be that much more expensive if you factor in lifetime costs!

The Nightmare Cooperative Is A Roguelike And Puzzle Game Combined

There is this type of puzzle game that requires players to move characters around on the board in unison in order to get everyone to the correct end point. PAC-MAN Friends uses this type of puzzle movement. It’s fairly complex and interesting, to say the least.

The Nightmare Cooperative is a roguelike game that uses that puzzle movement aspect to keep your party on their toes. You can use your mage to pick up that potion, but watch where your warrior is going or he may fall into the lava pit at the same time. We’ve got a full game review of The Nightmare Cooperative for you today.

Design

On the surface, this game looks like a typical top-down roguelike. However, it is much more creative than just a series of pixels on the screen. Each character is crafted with a unique and stylistic look. It’s like playing a piece of art you’d see in Juxtapose or something. The graphics are fantasy, but minimalistic all at once.

Each level of the dungeon consists of a number of chests, potions, health points, and monsters. The dungeons are randomly generated and you’ll never enter the same one twice in a game.

There are plenty of obstacles to keep you from easily sweeping through a room including pillars, fire-shooting towers, and slippery ice blocks. Plus, monsters keep popping up all over the place and pits of lava or acid will open up suddenly. It’s a pretty perilous dungeon.

Gameplay

The roguelike design of this game has players looting every possible nook of each level of the dungeon. On any given level there may be three or more chests. As soon as you open a chest, you unleash a monster or flame tower. So, the more chests you loot, the more monsters you bring forth.

Monsters don’t only appear after you’ve looted a chest. They will appear at random location in the dungeon after a certain number of movements. So, if you think you’re being sneaky by not opening a chest in order to avoid monsters, you’re out of luck.

Parts of the floor also open up to reveal lava or acid. You won’t die just by walking into a pit, but you will lose a health point. Your party each has four health points. They also have three slots for potion, which are used to trigger attacks from a distance.

The game is perma-death, which means that when you die, you lose everything and have to start over. All of the gold you’ve looted and characters you’ve unlocked are gone and you must start from scratch. Fans of roguelike games will appreciate this aspect as it is one of the key features of the genre.

The Good

I love the way this game looks. It takes place in a fantasy fiction dungeon with monsters and magicians. However, it has a highly stylized art design that gives it a hip feel.

The game plays smoothly and offers a rich challenge without being too hard. I managed to make it to the fourth world, but never past the first dungeon in it.

I also love that the developers combined a dungeon crawl with a movement puzzle game. Very unique for the genre.

The Bad

Value

The Nightmare Cooperative costs $3.99. Frankly, I was a bit surprised at the price. The game is very simple, even though it is a lot of fun. It seems better suited to be priced at $1.99. I completely love every aspect of the game though, and think the price is worth it. The replay value is incredibly high since no to games are ever alike and you will want to play it again and again to try to achieve the highest score.

Conclusion

Fans of roguelike games will flock to this fun little title. It looks great, plays great, and has a unique twist that others in the genre don’t have. If you’ve never played a roguelike title before, this one is appealing for its puzzle movement mechanics. However, the four-dollar price tag might make some shy away. The game is available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Download it in the App Store today.

Related Apps

This reminds me a bit of Sword of Fargoal. Another fun roguelike game I enjoy is Dungelot 2.

How Hacking Fixed The Worst Video Game Of All Time

According to urban legend, a landfill somewhere in the small city of Alamogordo, New Mexico, bulges with millions of copies of the worst game ever made—a game that many observers blamed for the North American video-game sales crash of 1983. Atari’s bubble burst because of a little alien.

In December 1982, Atari released E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial for the Atari 2600, and critics quickly labeled it the worst game of all time. In light of many more-recent debacles—I’m looking at you Aliens: Colonial Marines and SimCity—granting “worst game ever” status to E.T. in perpetuity seems somewhat unfair. Nonetheless, this primordial Atari 2600 title continues to top “worst of” charts, including our own, time and time again.

So why should you give it another chance? Because a code hacker managed to fix some of the games most glaring problems, and now it’s actually fun to play.

What went wrong?

When Atari finally got the rights to the E.T. name in late July 1982, it wanted to make the game a holiday-season sales hit. Steven Spielberg chose Howard Scott Warshaw (designer of both Yars’ Revenge and Raiders of the Lost Ark, two of the best Atari games ever) to design the game, and Atari established a schedule that gave him just five weeks to do the job.

“I was either the golden child selected to do the project, or I was the only one stupid enough to take on the challenge,” Warshaw says. Regrettably, due to the short development cycle, the game never received a proper fine-tuning. Atari rushed it out the door, and the product that hit store shelves was raw to a debilitating fault.

Behold the wildly popular Atari 2600—once synonymous with ‘video games.’

Players immediately began denouncing E.T. as confusing and frustrating. Gameplay was inscrutable, and nothing that appeared on-screen made intuitive sense. Vague symbols would occasionally pop up at the top of the screen, but they made no sense unless you dove deep into the manual to ferret out their meaning. Walking to the edge of the screen would jump you to an entirely new map with no clear objective to pursue. And occasionally characters would appear and, without giving any indication of their purpose or intent, summarily carry E.T. off to yet another screen.

The graphics were bad, even by the standards of early ’80s game design. And E.T. was tragically susceptible to falling into any of the multitude of “wells”—diamonds, circles, and arrows—that dotted the gamescape like burrows in a vast prairie-dog metropolis, whenever even a single pixel of his sprite collided with one of those shapes. Tumbling into these pointless holes, and then laboriously climbing back out, time and time again, made for seriously annoying and monotonous gameplay.

“I’d like to think I’m capable of toppling a billion-dollar industry myself, but I doubt it.”

Atari wildly overestimated the game’s sales volume, produced vastly too many copies, and ended up taking a major financial hit, suffering a reported loss of $100 million on the endeavor. But Warshaw modestly declines to shoulder all the blame for the 1983 video game depression, citing the failed Atari 2600 version of Pac-Man as a contributing factor. “I’d like to think I’m capable of toppling a billion-dollar industry myself, but I doubt it,” he says.

This game has fans?

Members of a small community of contrarians insist that the 1982 version of E.T. was a good, enjoyable, entertaining game. They say that people simply (and grossly) misunderstood it. The kids didn’t read the included instructions, they argue. Sure the game was difficult, they concede, but the game’s mechanics—featuring elements like open-ended worlds and side quests—were ahead of their time.

The game’s instructions answered all the questions regarding its objective, its point system, its enemies, the purpose of the wells, and the meaning of the strange symbols. Unfortunately, the instructions were also long and complicated, and about as likely to serve as reading material for a kid on Christmas morning—or really any time—as a terms-of-service agreement. The instructions did provide answers, but much as they would today, gamers in 1982 expected to hit Start and begin figuring out gameplay in real time.

The game’s unique open environment posed some issues of its own. Today, open worlds are common in video games. But when E.T. debuted, a world described by a three-dimensional cube (as illustrated above) was beyond ambitious. You’d reach a screen’s perimeter, and find yourself whisked away to an entirely different environment. The relocation was “correct” within the context of the game—but unless you understood the logic, you’d quickly become disoriented and be left grasping for answers.

E.T. lands and starts the game.

Duane Alan Hahn makes persuasive arguments in defense of the original E.T. on RandomTerrain, but there’s no denying that the game was a bad match for the younger audience that bought and played most games in 1982. E.T.’s gameplay, strategies, and style were unfamiliar to the infant gaming industry, and wouldn’t be appreciated until many years later.

A solution appears

To make the game more appealing to its many critics, chúng tôi launched a project to explain and address E.T.’s most widely recognized problems. Precisely who “fixed” the game remains unclear (edit 4/17/2013: We learned that the project was solely done by David Richardson aka Recompile of Greenville, PA), though an AtariAge member named Recompile certainly played a major role, but the bottom line is that the project yielded new ROM code that dramatically improves E.T.

Neocomputer.orgE.T. is safely on the edge.

A second issue related to general difficulty settings that were too challenging for even the most seasoned gaming pros. Every step would drain your energy, leading E.T. in short order to pass out (and thereby lower your score). For a game based on exploration, the steep penalty for any movement posed a major problem. But thanks to changes in the new game code, you lose energy only when running, falling, or hovering. Simply walking is no longer detrimental to your score.

The chúng tôi blog also provides some tips on how to customize the difficulty further. For example you can tweak the rate of energy consumption. Check it out to ratchet up the challenge! neocomputer.orgE.T. gets a makeover to be a natural color.

Finally, in the original version of the game, E.T. suffered a strange color alteration. Granted, aliens are often known as “little green men,” but in the movie E.T. was distinctly tan. Now, thanks to a few HEX value changes in the new code, E.T. gets as close to his “natural” color as the Atari will let him.

By opening the E.T. ROM file with a hex editor and adjusting key values, the project’s coders essentially patched the 30-year-old game. Of course, the contributors didn’t change the core gameplay at all, so they recommend that you—unlike your tween predecessors—read the manual or watch a tutorial video so you have a sense of what the heck you’re supposed to be doing.

Some of the hex fixes to the ROM that patch the 30-year-old game.

Warshaw commends the fixes and admires the hackers’ tenacity in sticking with the project. “He brought a lot of integrity to the project,” he says, “I think he did a nice job.” He assures PCWorld that if Atari had given him more time back in 1982, he would have made the crucial fixes himself.

You can download the new ROM directly from the Neocomputer projects page and open it using an Atari 2600 emulator such as Stella. E.T. was ahead of its time in 1982—but thanks to a dedicated fan with some technical prowess, you can finally enjoy this gaming classic. Even if it remains the most reviled game in history. 

Macrocosm Is A Beautifully Relaxing Game

Though I do play my fair share of action games on iOS, I tend to sway more towards the relaxing side of the game spectrum; games that I can use to relax at the end of a long week. When on the hunt for more cool-down games, I came across Macrocosm, a new space-age game that was released earlier this month.

This game is based in space where you play as a blob of dark matter with your objectives being simple: get bigger, don’t get killed by spaceships, and free other dark matter. To find out if this game is both relaxing and exciting, read on for my full Macrocosm review…

Design

When you launch Macrocosm, you’ll be greeted with a simple level select screen. Each level is represented by a different text icon, and after selecting a level, you’ll be brought right into gameplay barely any instruction aside from a couple of speech bubbles.

Your character, a black blob of dark matter, is designed well and fits in with the rest of the game. The blob is animated and bubbles when you race around the map finding more dark matter. The spaceships and planets in the game are also designed well, both with minimal yet classy designs that are very pleasing to the eyes.

Gameplay

To control your dark matter, you must tap and drag a line for your blob to move along. As you move about Macrocosm’s different maps, you’ll begin to see other blobs of dark matter. You must collect these other blobs by running into them in order to make your blob bigger.

You’re not alone in space, in fact, you have enemies. When collecting dark matter, you’ll run into tiny space ships that will shoot at you. Make sure to avoid these spaceships as, when you’re hit with their bullets, your blob of dark matter will shrink and eventually disappear completely.

Later in the game, you realize that these spaceships, or “forces of evil,” are trying to collect all of the dark matter for themselves, so your objective becomes to find these black dots of dark matter and free them from the forces.

The Good

Macrocosm’s design is absolutely beautiful with stunning space graphics and backdrops. I’m also a huge fan of the app’s setting, making for a super calming game that can still provide hours of fun.

The Bad

As of now, there’s  no instruction guide to lead you throughout the game. This can make first starting to play Macrocosm quite confusing, and may even turn some users away from the game completely. Additionally, there’s no way to return to the main menu mid-way through a game, making it so one must quit out of the app to switch levels.

Value

Considering Macrocosm only costs $0.99 and is a universal iPhone and iPad app, I think it’s a pretty good deal right off the bat. Though the game only has five levels, they can take quite some time to work through, especially as you near the end of the game, making for a game that will keep you entertained for hours.

Conclusion

Macrocosm may not be for everyone, but I can definitely recommend it to those who want to use the game to settle down after a long day with the game’s floaty controls, beautiful design, and interesting concept. However, those expecting high-action entertainment will be thoroughly disappointed.

Related Apps

If you’re looking for more games set in outer-space, you may want to check out Space Shooting, though this game takes on a more action packed feel.

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