The best mobile games are simple enough that you can play them for a few minutes and have fun. The ones that are very good will have you hooked for hours. Fragger is one of these types of games and while at first glance it might seem like a clone of Angry Birds, it’s actually a fiendishly addictive game in its own right.
The premise is really simple; you have a set amount of grenades with which to blow up all the enemies on a level. Your character cannot move and neither can the enemies. You only have control over the angle and power at which your hero lobs his grenade. It sounds childishly easy and for the first few levels it is, but then the puzzle elements start to creep in. Grenades do not explode on contact but instead roll down inclines, detonating only when coming to a stop. Enemies hide behind cover or inside buildings, requiring you to blow up obstacles first. Sometimes a very specific sequence of actions is required to get to enemies as blowing up the wrong things can block off all access to your targets. Fortunately, the “Retry” button is permanently shown on the right-hand side of the screen and you will definitely be making use of it.
Some levels require pinpoint accuracy as you’ll have to throw grenades down holes and pipes. This can be a little frustrating as there is no “Throw” button. Instead, moving your finger up or down on the screen sets the angle while left and right adjusts the power. The grenade is thrown as soon as you lift your finger. If you are not careful with this action you can mess up your angle and velocity as your finger brushes the screen.
It’s a good thing that there is an “Abort Explosion” button as destroying the wrong things at the wrong time can cost you the level. You are given a limited amount of level “Skips” as well as solutions along with the option to purchase more using real cash. Levels are unlocked in linear fashion or you can splurge on some cash to gain access to everything. Considering that there are twelve worlds with 370 levels to conquer, this game will keep you busy for a long time.
The game uses cartoon style visuals so blowing up enemies with grenades is not as gory as it sounds. The graphics are clear and colorful with some neat touches like enemy sprites changing depending on which level pack you are playing. Since the game is free you have to put up with a few free adverts but these were never obtrusive and crop up mostly on loading screens. The audio isn’t particularly impressive but for a game like this it really doesn’t have to be.
Fragger really got me hooked more than I expected and since it’s free I can heartily recommend it to anyone with a compatible device. Just don’t blame me if it keeps you up past bedtime!
*Review originally published 2012.