Solbot: Energy Rush - A Colorful Journey Toward Energy Sustainability
In Solbot: Energy Rush, the player is a robot named Solbot who is on a space mission to collect renewable energy for humankind. The player accomplishes this mission by collecting brightly colored orbs in each of the game's 50 levels. Touch the wrong orb, and the player dies and has to restart the level. However, players will find plenty of help along the way in power ups and neat facts about energy sustainability.
Released in July 2018, this mobile game from indie game studio Freakout Games combines easy-to-learn gameplay with bright colors and an honorable mission. Solbot: Energy Rush is an entertaining casual game to play to help pass the time.
Good Difficulty Curve, Great Use of Color
The game's mechanics are simple enough, but can take a little time to get used to. Players move Solbot left or right by tapping on either the left or right side of Solbot. The game doesn't utilize a drag or pull to move the character, which is different but it doesn't affect the quality or difficulty of the game.
By tapping and moving right or left, players make their way through each level collecting the orbs corresponding to Solbot's color. Solbot changes color after each level. In each level, the orbs corresponding to Solbot are also indicated with a gold ring, making them easier to spot.
The difficulty in Solbot: Energy Rush curves nicely, starting simple at first. As levels pass, the arrangement of the orbs become more complex and the player needs to collect more orbs to complete the level. However, every 10 levels, the game introduces a new power up that makes collecting orbs easier, such as the magnet, which pulls all the right colored orbs to Solbot. The power ups appear on the screen among the orbs, and part of the gameplay is collecting the power up without running into any wrong colored orbs.
Facts Need a Little More "Energy"
Freakout Games seeks to increase social awareness of various issues through its games. With Solbot: Energy Rush, various facts about energy sustainability are presented daily along with a free key to resume after a death. I like the facts idea, but the presentation makes it easy to ignore the fact and just claim the free key.
Instead, it would've been cooler to present the facts either as a quiz. For example, instead of just sharing a fact with the free key, the fact could be presented as a multiple choice question. If the player picks the right answer, they receive two free keys. If they get it wrong, then they only receive the one. As a quiz, the player then has to read and interact with the information, which ultimately builds the awareness Freakout Games wants to achieve.
Overall, once players get the hang of the controls, Solbot: Energy Rush is fun game to open up when there's a few minutes to spare. There's enough challenge to keep folks interested, but not so much challenge to feel frustrating.