If you like hockey, but don’t want something too complicated, then I have a good one for you. It’s called Ice Rage and it was developed by Mountain Sheep and HeroCraft. It’s been available for iOS for over a year, and it finally made its way to Android. It’s a cross between the 1984 hit game Hat Trick, air hockey, and pong. It’s basically one-on-one with goalies.
You can play either single player or against a friend. For single player, you can choose from quick match, tournament, or deathmatch. In multiplayer, you can play either a quick match or a death match, but gameplay is one device. There isn’t a WiFi option so you will want to make sure you’re using something on the larger side like a Galaxy Note or any tablet. Quick match is pretty self explanatory. It’s one game to see who wins or loses. In tournament mode, you play a series of fast games to see how many you can win. In this mode, you will rack up points that will enable you to upgrade your player as far as speed, power, and technique. For deathmatch, there isn’t a tutorial so I’m not 100% sure how it works. You have to beat three different opponents. Each player has a meter that represents how much strength is left and you win when your opponent’s meter is depleted. You can knock your opponent’s meter down by either scoring or knocking them over (checking). Scoring seems to affect the meter more, but you could essentially defeat a player by scoring less goals. There is no time limit, and you must defeat all three opponents. The problem is that each opponent gets to start with a full strength meter, but yours won’t reset.
Starting a game is pretty straightforward. For starters, you need to select your character. There are 17 to choose from and 3 to unlock for 99-cents. You will find some guest “celebrities” like Jester the villian from Minigore 2 and Enviro-Bear. The unlockables are Antero, Skar, and Santa Claus. After you have decided on your character, then it’s a matter of selecting what type of game you want to play, select the difficulty level, and what type of controls. There are three levels of difficulty. Easy has slow gameplay with auto goalies, Medium is fast gameplay with auto goalies, and Hard if the fastest gameplay with manual goalies. You also have an option to play with one button or two. In the two button configuration, you will control your player with your left thumb on the virtual pad at the bottom left corner. The bottom right corner has your shoot/check button. If you select the one button configuration, you will only get the shoot/check button and your player will move automatically. I know this seems strange, but it’s actually not that bad since utilizing a virtual pad isn’t always easy. This game would probably be pretty cool on something like the ARCHOS GamePad since you can automap the buttons.
Now it’s a matter of getting on the ice to see how many goals you can score. You always play the red team and go from left to right. In quick match, the games are 1:45, and in tournament mode they are only 45 seconds. Either move your player manually or let him move automatically (depending on your choice), and press the shoot button to score. You can also press the same button to check your opponent to knock them over and steal the puck. Sometimes when a player shoots, the puck ricochets to the other side and can sometimes score in the opposite goal. This is where it reminds of air hockey. I found Ice Rage to be easy to play, but found it a little difficult to control my player when using manual controls. Both easy and medium are quick to master, but the hard level is difficult because you have to control your goalie as well.
If you find that you don’t have a lot of time for games, Ice Rage might be ideal for you. The games are quick and you can play anytime you have a few minutes. It’s available now in the Play Store for 99-cents. Check out my hands on video below as well as the trailer, and hit one of the download links. As always, let me know what you think.
- Music and sound FX from the audio designer of Alan Wake & Max Payne.
- Single-device multiplayer for 2 people
- Awesome 3D graphics
- Tournament mode: Can you defeat the legendary Skar?
- Over 2 million players can’t be wrong!
- The best single-player Hockey game around.