Be your own boss.
Every single time a hero comes along to rescue a land or a princess, some big, bad boss has to suffer. Isn’t that horrifically unfair? Think about all those poor monsters, trolls and other creatures who were just innocently walking along, trashing and eating everything in their path. WackyLands Boss puts the shoe on the other foot, allowing you to finally exact revenge on all those pesky do-gooders.
Filled with quirky humor, WackyLands Boss is a silly romp across a fictional countryside to reclaim your lands. WackyLands Boss lets you create your own Boss – a large creature typical of an adventure game’s end-of-level boss – and wreak havoc how you choose.
At first, you can only outfit your boss with rudimentary weapons, armor and accessories. But as your Boss defeats more opponents, it levels up, gaining more power and health. Defeating enemies also yields coins for purchasing upgraded items to increase your destructive power.
You can also evolve your monster, adding special abilities and attacks to your arsenal. Each evolution levels up independently, so you’ll likely be replaying several levels to bring up each evolution if you wish.
The graphics in WackyLands Boss help bring the Boss to life. Similar to the Wii’s Mii creator, you get a basic body, but can customize your Boss to be male or female, angry or happy, scary or cute. The first weapon my Boss used – a bunch of spears and pitchforks duct-taped to his hand – was a good demonstration of the humor to come. Everything is completely tongue-in-cheek, referencing all sorts of adventure game areas, character designs, and simply doesn’t take them so darn seriously. The sounds add to the silliness, including your Boss’ grunts and gleeful bashing noises.
WackyLands Boss is a simple left to right beat-’em-up at its core. Your boss will walk left to right, defeating enemies before coming to another Boss, matching you toe-to-toe in height and girth, though not likely intellect. The 12 stages in the game are fairly similar in construction, varying only with stronger enemies who can attack you from greater distances. If it weren’t for the multiple evolutions, the game would be a pretty short trip. Fortunately that, along with Chillingo’s various Crystal-based achievements and leaderboards, add to the replay value.
The main issue – indeed, one of the bigger issues with the iPhone as a gaming console in general – are the controls for movement and attack. Everything is a tap or swipe, but it’s not always responsive. Certainly walking is fine (tapping and holding the side of the screen you’d like the Boss to walk towards), but the attacks and evades aren’t great. Attacking is accomplished by tapping, unless it’s that little bit too long, in which case you’ll walk. You can use a strong attack with a swipe towards the enemy you’d like to attack, which is the most reliable action. However, rolling and picking up items is the most finicky of all. Both involve vertical swipes on the screen, but rolls are done beside your Boss, while picking something up is done directly on top. Given the iPhone’s screen size, you’ll often do one when you want the other. This becomes a problem particularly in later stages, when you’ll need to have some serious dexterity to stay alive – not to mention being able to pick up cows and throw them to bowl over enemies, or eat delicious princesses to regain your lost health!
Though a little touchy at time, WackyLands Boss is a fun, simple game. It doesn’t expect much from you other than destroy anything that moves. It’s too bad about the controls, but it’s not enough to destroy what WackyLands Boss tries to accomplish – be a darn fun beat-’em-up in your pocket.