Isotope: Brilliant Graphics in this Fun Space Shooter Game

Isotope (iTunes link, $0.99), a space shooter game that has some amazing graphics, is growing on me. Many claim it’s like Geometry Wars, but I can’t tell you for sure as I haven’t played that. (If you’re a fan of that kind of game though, I’d suppose this one is also for you!)

For the most part, you’ll see yourself just trying to kill some massively nasty ships in space. But what makes this game fun and continuously enjoyable is that you have specific goals — better ammunition, a more powerful ship, etc, and a way of progressing through the galaxy in Campaign mode. The desire to be stronger than your enemy combatants should keep you playing for awhile. Of course, mastering the controls is another thing:

I found the default device controls rather difficult at first. Perhaps that’s because I am a lefty and my brain is wired differently. Fortunately, this is addressable: you can actually click on your target rather than use your DPad to aim in the general direction of enemies. Otherwise, the default settings for movement and for shooting your enemies is the DPad (your left thumb controls movement, whereas your right thumb controls aiming). You can also control your movement via the accelerometer, but I found that absolutely confusing — I’m just not that good at the accelerometer!

The other thing about controls is something you really can’t fix: if I’m idle and want to use two thumbs to shoot at ships coming at me, I have no way of doing this. Wouldn’t that be great? If you’re so immersed in the game for this to be an issue, you know that the game is great to play. That isn’t their fault though, but it shows what you’re thinking of when you’re surrounded at all sides by the enemies.

In Survival mode, your goals are different – you just have to keep killing baddies. It’s fun and incredibly immersive.

All in all, after you get the hang of it, Isotope is a very enjoyable game. The graphics are splendid, and the rush to escape or to kill those enemy ships is sure to make your adrenaline pumping. There’s even a free version available so that you can try before you buy. The one big request I’d make of the Isotope team is to make lefty controls, swapping the thumbs for those of us who might want to relax our fingers, but if not for that, it’s still a great game to play.

Tamar Weinberg is a blogger and author of The New Community Rules (July 2009), a book on social media marketing and how to leverage existing communities for awareness and profit. She is also a new mom.