If you could sum up World of Goo in one word – and you didn’t want to use awesome, magnificent or fantastic – magical would work just fine. The developers at 2D Boy, a team of two (that’s right, two!) ex-Electronic Arts employees working out of San Francisco, have brought us an incredible world to escape in as we rescue goo balls from the evil World of Goo corporation. The Android world waited a long time for this game to hop on over to the Android Market, though the wait is most definitely worth it. The game has been flawlessly ported, giving us the incredible soundtrack and immersive environments we’ve come to expect from the World of Goo.
Your objective when playing World of Goo is to traverse the various stages while you rescue balls of goo, the very same balls of goo that you must stick together in structures to solve the various puzzles. This is where the game really shines. Although the premise of the game never changes, it’s hard to notice. The puzzles have you climbing over obstacles, up narrow(ing) passages, bulding a goo ball tower in a spinning machine as well as out of the mouth of a weird cartoon… thing, and thats just the start. It’s hard to bring to mind another game that has included such innovation when it comes to using logic and cognitive procedure to solve fun, exciting and even heart-warming problems. It’s this absolute sense of achievement and stimulus that will provide hours of fun through the 48 different levels.
The World of Goo itself completely brings your Android device’s screen to life, and I mean it. Every single stage is full of life; color, animation, characters and moving objects all existing inside a impeccably designed cartoon world. It really is magical, and I’ve even caught myself exploring the screen with my fingertips in admiration, thinking to myself “how did they come up with this stuff?”. Every stage you encounter serves some sort of theme surrounding the evil World of Goo corporations mysterious and devious plan, which is hinted at every level you begin by the Sign Painter; an unknown entity that leaves signs with a small quote, some of which are designed to help you complete the task at hand.
The controls for World of Goo need no introduction. This game must have been designed with touch screen controls in mind. It’s completely natural and organic, and I can’t imagine any other control scheme to play around with. Even someone new to touch controls will have no issue at all handling what’s presented before them. As with any app, though, I found at least one qualm with the controls. I feel that a further zoom out would be a great help for some of the levels, but given the quality of the rest of this incredible piece of art, I won’t complain too much.
When you’ve completed the entire game (which is a feat unto itself), you’ll find that the balls of goo that you’ve successfully rescued have been delivered to World of Goo corporations HQ, which you can then use to try and complete the tallest tower. Although a true multiplayer feature is absent, you can compare your tower to the towers that other players have created, giving a sense of competition and further achievement.
All-in-all, World of Goo sets a standard for games in general. I thoroughly believe that World of Goo will reach out to even the most modest of mobile gamers. A thoughtful and enveloping offering, heart-warming and magical, World of Goo is a must have for any touch-screen device. A word to the wise, however: if you haven’t already tried it, do so right now!