Gravity Pods is a physics-based, projectile shooting, puzzle game created by Keith Peters for his newly launched Wicked Pissah Games website. The goal is to fire a projectile and hit a spinning purple target across the screen. Barriers are usually in the way, but by using gravity pods you can bend the path your projectile takes to send it virtually anywhere.
Aim your turret with the arrow keys and press [space] to fire. Each shot leaves a dotted trail in its wake, so if you miss, your next attempt can be fine-tuned to perfection. Aiming is a precise task that can be obsessed over to the decimal point. Great for puzzle fans, but bad for perfectionists. The real fun begins after about a dozen levels when you get to place gravity pods on your own. Drag and drop orange pods and place them anywhere on the screen, even inside walls, to customize your projectile's path. The possibilities are enormous, and sometimes just a one pixel adjustment can mean the difference between success and failure.
You have around 20 shots per level, so don't be afraid to use a little trial-and-error to supplement your immensely complex physics calculations. Even if you use up your shots without winning, you can simply restart the level and continue until you get it right. And believe me, in some of the later levels, you'll praise this feature on more than one occasion.
Analysis: Gravity Pods is a simple physics shooting game that requires a little more brain work than many gamers may be looking for. Some of the puzzles you'll have to solve can be extremely taxing, forcing you to make fine adjustments to pod positioning as well as your turret's aim. On top of that, trial-and-error is integral to the game, which doesn't float everyone's boat.
Positioning the turret is a precise exercise, but placing pods, however, is more of a slapdash task with no guides other than eyeballing their location. This little bit of randomness is an interesting element in the game, but if you use all your shots and re-start a stage, you lose their position. After two (or three) dozen attempts at a single level without getting a solution, things get pretty frustrating. I resorted to putting my fingers on the screen to mark the pods' spot when forced to re-start a level.
Unique and highly cerebral, if Gravity Pods doesn't make you want to pull your hair out, you'll love it.
You might know Keith from his BIT-101 lab website, or perhaps from reading his book ActionScript Animation: Making Things Move! His new venture with Wicked Pissah promises that we'll be seeing more new and exciting things coming our way in the near future.