GENRE: Side-scroller, Shooter
PLATFORM: iOS, Android
RELEASE: May 23, 2013
THE GOOD: Great soundtrack, Comic-style cutscenes, Strong art design
THE BAD: Lack of replay value, Too many advertisements
Growing up I never quite understood the appeal of watching a Western. Sure, cowboys are sort of like the knights of their time and drunken gunfights are kinda cool, but the majority of them are… well, boring. Every once in awhile I’d watch one with my father on TV, his favorite were – of course – John Wayne movies, but in general my time was better spent watching cartoons or drawing monsters.
Now, take your typical western and toss in a bunch of undead monsters PLUS a sexy, gun-slinging sheriff? That’s the formula behind Levelbit‘s latest mobile game JANE WILDE, a side-scrolling shooter where you play as the well-endowed title heroine on a mission to eradicate a plague of undead scum from your town. Said scum include a variety of vampires, skeletons, bats, kamikaze foxes and mythical creatures – all of which you can kick, shoot, shred and explode.
The controls (left, right, kick, shoot) are simple enough that you can start playing without the need of a tutorial and the difficultly levels seems well-adjusted enough that you’re never overwhelmed, but always challenged to stay alive. Ammo is not infinite, but you can always pick more up from a fallen enemy or purchase more from the Gunsmith at the end of each stage. There are also weapon upgrades, Power-Ups, and additional firearms (grenade launching fishgun!) all of which add a slight bit of strategy to the game.
While Jane Wilde isn’t at a loss for levels (there are 40 if you count Survival Mode), the gameplay can get repetitive at times: walk, shoot, kick, walk. Also, since it’s FREE to download there are ads at the beginning and end of each stage which can become annoying. It’s a small price to pay for such a great game, but one that interrupts the experience all the same.