Puzzle games have to be part of a staple diet of any gaming console and A-Men slips right into the aperitif section of a meal. If you think that this game’s a prayer simulator then I’m truly sorry to disappoint you but if you’re looking for something that teases your competitive edge then this may be a good place to start.

A-Men tells the tale of five dudes crossing 40 levels of puzzle mayhem. Your enemy consists of A-droids that vary from very dumb, through annoying, to the down right intelligent. Your goal is to kill A-droids by using explosives, bridges, lifts and a selection of prepared traps and once you meet the target you can escape in a chopper driven by THE most stereotypical American surfer dude known to man, who actually drove me round the bend until I just had the subtitles turned on!

Outside of the annoying ‘surfer dude’ the audio just isn’t dynamic at all. There is a limited amount of phrases that each character has that can get mind numbingly boring within a few stages of meeting them. Passing specific areas of each stage triggers the same phrase and if that particular part of the level isn’t annoying enough all you have to do is sprinkle the same unfunny joke over the top of it to make you turn it off.

Anyway, bringing in the chopper doesn’t mean you have to leave because there are always more droids to kill if you want to. Each level has a set of bonus conditions to meet which don’t have to be done in one sitting offering a load of replayability to the game. Possibly one of the most addictive parts of playing A-Men is going back and trying to beat your previous scores. So much so, I’m still messing around with the earlier levels instead of progressing as far as possible.

The bonus objectives include challenges such as trying to kill the first A-droid in under a specified time, killing all the droids, completing the level within a certain time limit, trying to finish the game without using explosives and much, much more. Not only that but your attempts at each stage are scored starting at ‘S’ which is the top score and you work your way down. Your timing and order in which you execute your traps is essential to high scores and occasionally you’ll find yourself having to reset and start the stage again. It’s not too frustrating, especially if you’ve played any sort of puzzle mobile gaming in the past.

Apart from ‘it was only funny the first time’ personalities, the rest of the game is pretty good. The audio is good, the personality of the droids is quite amusing and the levels look really nice. The graphics aren’t too adventurous but they are neat and precise.

Control wise, A-Men works well with a rotating menu at the right hand side of the screen that dynamically changes depending on your location. For example, if you’re standing by a bridge and have dynamite your primary choice will be just that with other options slightly faded but still available through rotation of the menu or using those good old fashioned buttons. When you’re under time pressure, and trying to achieve those extra goals on each level, the rotating menu can be a bit clumsy and take time to get what you need but other than that they’re fine.







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