For a game that is so simple, it's remarkably easy to get virtual bowling wrong.
All it takes is for some dodgy physics or patchy controls, and suddenly rolling a heavy ball at some delicately balanced pins loses its appeal.
Galaxy Bowl, on the other hand, nails the core game mechanics in the main, and dresses it up in some smart graphics that should show off your Android handset in the best possible light.Bowled over
The bowling itself feels as accurate as a mobile phone approximation could do.
You push the ball down the lane with your finger (in landscape or portrait mode), and add aftertouch either with a swipe of the finger or by tilting the phone.
The physics feel, for the most part, pretty good. Occasionally, though, you'll find a pin falls after the ball is returned to you for your second shot, leaving an empty lane to fire at and an inevitable spare.
More consistent in its delivery is the presentation, which is spot on: the graphics are drawn in a bright, colourful, and realistic 3D way, and the sound effects are exactly what you'd expect to hear upon walking into a bowling alley – all rolling balls and clattering pins.7-10 split
There are nevertheless a couple of points preventing this from being an essential purchase, and these ultimately determine where on the 7-10 split at the top of the Pocket Gamer scoring grid Galaxy Bowl finishes.
Aside from the abovementioned delayed reactions to a toppled pin, there's actually not much meat to the game.
It's just a series of single matches: there are no virtual opponents and no real-time multiplayer opposition. In essence, you are just competing against your (or others’) best scores.
So it comes down to personal preference. I, for instance, don't think a lack of AI opponents is that big a deal. It'd be a nice extra, but I'd rather keep playing frames of 10 against myself. It makes for a quicker game, and I don't think this particular experience needs an arbitrary opponent's score to compete against to make it fun.
And with games lasting just a few minutes – perfect for quick bursts – there's certainly plenty of fun to be had. Galaxy Bowl may roll in a little light in terms of play options but, thanks to its impressive physics and tactile controls, it should still be considered a decent purchase for mobile bowling fans.