Game Reviews

N.O.V.A. Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance

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N.O.V.A. Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance
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| N.O.V.A.

[This review is taken from a two part feature published in July, which rounded up nine of Gameloft’s iPhone to Android game conversions. You can read part 1 here, and part 2 here.]

Gameloft’s Halo-aping futuristic first-person shooter N.O.V.A., took the iPhone by storm last year. It remains an enormously impressive game on a technical level, and it’s still the finest game of its kind on the App Store.

How does the Android version fare? Well let’s get this out of the way from the start – just as the game is the finest FPS on iPhone, so it proves to be the finest FPS on Android. Of course, that’s not saying a lot at present, but the point stands that Android owning FPS fans can rest assured as to its quality.

There are issues with the framerate, which frequently drops during busy sections, and the screen of the HTC Desire we tested the game on appears to be no match for the iPhone’s. Or, at least, Gameloft’s calibration is worse.

The game requires complex multi-touch control – using your left thumb to move and your right to aim, fire, reload, and jump. However, we often found ourselves shooting when we merely wanted to aim – particularly when we were moving at the same time.

Despite the clunky controls (which could owe a lot to hardware issues), there does appear to be approximate graphical parity between the two versions, with the Android one if anything possessing sharper edges and deeper colours.

Gameloft’s Android N.O.V.A. conversion is not perfect, then, but it’s still a cause for celebration that this excellent game is on Android.

N.O.V.A. Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance

A reasonable conversion of an outstanding game, N.O.V.A. still stands as the finest FPS on Android
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