I recently previewed Nose Invaders, and I was quite looking forward to playing the full and final version for iPhone, but unfortunately the game has been released with a couple of pretty large bugs that spoilt the experience somewhat during the course of this Nose Invaders iPhone review.
Aside from those bugs, this is a pretty playable little physics puzzle game that, while not likely to win any awards, will provide you with a few hours of tricky puzzling action. The game sets you with the task of clearing a sequence of noses of some pesky flu and virus germs, with various different elements in play at once.
You start on one platform, and must direct your character around with slingshot controls that are essentially the reverse of those found in Angry Birds. You can hop from platform to platform, and must touch each virus once to collect it. Each virus you collect adds a star to your score, and you will need a set amount of stars to unlock level packs and stages.
There are a few things to be careful of when playing. First of all, as you are in a nose, the breath of the person creates wind that goes up and down in a rhythm. Most of the viruses can only be reached by utilising this wind to get about. There are also a few enemy germs hanging around that can kill you instantly, and these must also be avoided.
It makes for a good little game with an addictive nature, but unfortunately I came across one huge bug during my review, and it is one that appeared again and again. The game will sometimes not recognise that you have collected any or all of the germs in the stage, even if you get them all very quickly. You collect all the germs, and your character just sits there. With nothing else to possibly do, you can make him die, at which point the game will sometimes move to the next level, but it will more often than not restart the same stage.
For example, on level 12 I collected all the germs, and the stage should have finished, but I had to repeat and waited for the level to end eight times before finally being allowed onto the next stage. It is such a shame that this bug (tested on both a 4th gen iPod Touch and an iPhone 4) should ruin what should be a decent little game. UPDATE: The developer has made me aware that you can exit the level by shooting towards the bottom middle of the screen. This does need to be made more obvious in the game, but I have updated the score below to reflect this.
The other bug is that the game does have a tendancy to crash, which happened to me four or five times.
Take away those bugs and the game is pretty good. The music and sound effects of the various creatures you find yourself occupying are really nice, the graphics are cute and likable and the little cutscenes are well done, with a decent level of presentation thoughout. There is a generous 60 levels included, a cool bacterium to view badges, and full Game Center integration with achievements and leaderboards.
The score below may seem a little harsh(see update above), but if the developer fixes the current bugs, then you can make the score below 75 instead of 70. A decent little puzzle game, Nose Invaders for iPhone is spoiled by some nasty bugs when it should be the viruses that you are worrying about.