4 star rating

Angry Birds Space Review

Pros: Challenging physics engine; Fun new characters; Impressive level of detail; Evocative soundtrack
Cons: Slightly overplayed; Only one new bird
The Verdict: 'Angry Birds Space' is a fresh take on our feathered friends, combining lush graphics and a new physics engine that forces you to restrategize.

REVIEW

SPECIFICATIONS

Of all the games that have landed in app stores, none has had quite the same cultural impact as "Angry Birds." Since the game's launch in December 2009, it's been downloaded more than 500 million times, spawned multiple spinoffs, and in total, had more than 200,000 years of gameplay. Now, these fuming feathered fowl are slipping the surly bonds of Earth in "Angry Birds Space," the latest iteration of the game by Finnish-based Rovio. But if you've already followed the Angry Birds to Rio and weathered the Seasons with them, is it still worth 99 cents to blast off into the final frontier? Yes.

Article Continued Below

Angry Birds Space Story

It's hard not to detest these pigs in space when they're wicked enough to take the fight all the way into the cosmos. In the game's introduction, we're shown a giant claw that scoops up a patch of land where the Angry Birds' eggs are perched, and it swiftly disappears into an interstellar wormhole. Needless to say, our irked winged heroes are quick to chase the perpetrators, but unwittingly find themselves in a whole new arena. Now, not only do they have to contend with evil, anti-gravitational pigs, they also have to work out how to launch themselves into the void when their slingshot trajectories have been affected by the different gravity pulls of planets, black holes, stars and more.

Gameplay

Angry Birds SpaceFortunately for our feathered friends, entering a new galactic dimension means gaining new superpowers, such as the ability to aim certain birds in a different direction mid-flight. Also, a new character called Ice Bird makes his debut, an alien avian creature who can turn anything he touches into solid ice. Other new changes include Lazer Bird, an exclusive Samsung character, and Danger Zone, an exclusive Samsung Angry Birds level.

The retooled physics engine adds a new dimension of fun. Aim too close to a planet, and you're pulled into its orbit (represented by a bubblelike sphere encircling the world). However, you can use the bird's new circuitous path around the planet to your advantage, strategizing new angles of takeoff. But if your estimate of the trajectory is just a few degrees off -- helpful tracer lines illumate your projected path -- your bird will fly off into the abyss of space.

The "how to" aspect of the game is pleasingly familiar. We played "Angry Birds Space" on our Samsung Galaxy Note, and as always, we simply touched the slingshot, slid our finger backward and aimed, then let go to fling the feathered furious to pursue some horrible hogs. Then we tapped midscreen to let loose with the bird's particular special ability. Pinching to zoom in and out of environments as well as swiping to see specific parts of the scene worked well. (If you're also using the Note, we wouldn't recommend toying with pen input--we could never pitch our flapping protagonists accurately that way.)

Angry Birds Ice LevelAs we progressed through the game, we encountered plenty of unfamiliar content -- including new space junk--space bubbles, spheres of ice, and sometimes even a rocket ship --that we had to blast our way through. Supposedly, the newest version also has its culmination in the challenge of defeating Space King, a new supervillain who pilots a flying saucer with a big claw (sound familiar?), but we haven't yet progressed far enough into the story to come face to face with him.

Graphics

"Angry Birds Space" includes impressively detailed scenes paired with a compelling soundtrack that's sure to evoke some suspense (or frustration) in gamers. We appreciated the rich colors and the level of minute care that obviously went into designing the product. Whether we zoomed out to look at the whole picture or zeroed in on a spot to help us work out a better strategy, the graphics on "Angry Birds Space" always stayed sharp, and animation flowed smoothly from frame to frame on our Samsung Galaxy Note. We particularly liked the animation that showed pigs instantly freezing in space when you popped their bubble.

Angry Birds Space InvadersIn particular, there was one little Easter egg that we highly appreciated within the game: As we got to the stage of unlocking Eggsteroids, we encountered a bonus level that paid tribute to the classic "Space Invaders" game.

Verdict

The simplicity and addictiveness of the original Angry Birds is the real reason why the game has been so successful and Rovio remembers to stay true to its strategy in this iteration. At the same time, the new NASA-approved physics engine does wonders to keep "Angry Birds Space" fresh, and we thoroughly enjoyed the game's sumptuous graphics and evocative (if slightly twee) soundtrack. And while Rovio pays homage to timeless games of the past, it's not hard to see that Angry Birds itself is well on its way to being this generation's version of the classic arcade game.

Tags: Angry Birds Space, Angry Birds, iOS Games, Android Games, games, reviews, iPad games, iPhone games, Apple iOS Game Center, Apple iOS Games, Apple iPad Games, Apple iPhone Games, Android gaming console

Technical Specifications
Angry Birds Space
http://www.rovio.com/


Software TypeCell Phone App; Games
PlatformsAndroid; iOS; iPad; iPhone
Required Processor
Software Required OS:iOS (iPhone, iPad), Android, Kindle Fire
Required RAM
Disk Space
FIND A REVIEW
Laptops
All Product Types Accessories eReaders Laptops Networking Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Brand
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS AVADirect Averatec BeagleBone BenQ CTL Corp. CyberPowerPC Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Eurocom Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Google Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo Maingear MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Razer Sager Samsung Sony Sony PlayStation Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv Vizio VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating Editor's Choice 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 21 4 5 6 7 8 9
Resolution
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1136 x 768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1792 x 768 1900x1080 1920x1080 1920x1200 2560 x 1440 2560 x 1600 2560 x 1700 2880 x 1620 2880 x 1880 3200 x 1800 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options
SUBSCRIBE