Review: Marble Woka Woka UWP - it's all too much!
"It's all too much for me to take!" sang The Beatles, and it's exactly how I feel about this UWP game for all Windows 10 computers and phones. Taking the familiar (ball shooting) Zuma premise, bonuses, powerups, and 'special' balls come so thick and fast that you're left breathless in their wake. Is it worth learning and persevering? Possibly, though it'll cost you, since the IAPs here are swingeing.
'Zuma' was the original of the genre, from back in 2004, but it has been much copied, most famously on Windows Phone by 10tons, in their Sparkle series. And now we have another implementation, as a UWP game (which has its own quirk) for Windows 10 (Mobile) and which is surprisingly good, though utterly overwhelming at the same time. While Sparkle had laid back mystic music and introduced power ups relatively slowly, relying on quality arcade gaming rather than gimmicks, Marble Woka Woka goes to the other extreme, with jaunty exotic music, visual and audio effects, power ups, bonuses, extras, stars, etc. showered at you in quick succession.
And, being a freemium title, there needs to be a reason to pay extra for more currency, more lives, more powerups, so the 'snakes' get faster and harder, meaning that you'll start dying (or running out of time) more often and will then need to pay (or watch ads) to keep going. It's standard freemium fare (though with crazy £50+ maximum purchases - naughty, naughty, developers!) but I far, far preferred Sparkle 2's 'buy once' model. Maybe it's just me. Or maybe I'm right and it's the freemium world that's wrong?
It all feels a little like the developers have taken game and freemium ideas from many previous titles and shoehorned everything into one 'in your face' whole without any subtlety or curation. Surely, at some point in development, some game editor should have said "Hang on, there's enough added now, just stop!"
I guess I shouldn't complain at a commercial UWP game at this stage in Windows 10 Mobile's existence, but it's just that - too commercial and not enough 'labour of love'. This is a tabloid-esque "Love Island" compared to Sparkle's more gentile "Bake Off"!
Reviewed by Steve Litchfield at