Effing Worms Game

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Not Quite an Upgrade Game

What you basically do here is to control the worm on a side scrolling killing spree. Anything that bumps into the mouth area is immediately eaten up. Eat enough living things and you will be able to choose between one of two growth evolutions. Each evolution will make you bigger, and of course, will summon even more troops to fight against you. But do not worry even if they bring in tanks and giant robot-type machines, in the end, they are all just food for you, so keep on chewing!

The controls are simplistic, relying only on the keyboard for directional movement. You control the height and angle of your attacks (or rather, your jumps) by controlling the speed of your movement underground. If you want to eat up a row of people on the floor, make a small and shallow jump that sends you on a low, long parabolic arc. If you are aiming for those annoying bomber planes that attack you, just make you angle steeper so you can jump straight up. The idea here is to get anything that moves into the path of your mouth. Do that and you will consume your way into victory.

The upgrades that are made available after eating a certain amount of live targets vary in type and value. The good thing is that they come with pretty handy explanations so there is no guesswork involved. Some upgrades will increase your defensive stats such as increasing your resistance to attacks or by making your HP much higher, other upgrades are focused more on increasing your speed, allowing you to make faster turns and more importantly, move even faster than before. A few of the upgrades will provide you with special boosts, such as spikes that will allow you to damage enemies just by bumping into them, a larger mouth area that would allow you to swallow more targets easily, and even wings that would enable your graboid to take to the skies for a prolonged period. Lastly, one of the upgrades will double the amount of points you get per kill -which is a great thing for players aiming for a high score.

Too Fast to Appreciate

As much fun as we had with this worms game, we cannot say all that much about the graphics. The details are very simplified, reminiscent of really early (but also well made) flash games. The art is not badly made, though the details are down to the bare minimum -the humans are all but stick figures and the worm itself is a giant brown segmented thing. While it sounds rough, the visuals actually work well together. The rough style feels a lot more intended than it is rushed -making for a very pleasant viewing expereince. That is, if you can restrain yourself from speeding across the stage in a mad feeding frenzy.

Thanks to the game's eat-what-you-can style, you will be spending so much time goobling through soil and humans so much that most of the backgrounds are all but a blur. The nicely drawn cityscape in the background escapes most players for the first few runs;which is a shame since they are actually nice to look at.

Not Much of a Lifespan

Sadly, this is a one stage game. And as much fun as one can have with it, it will only be amusing for an hour at most. The waves are easy to clear and eating up the enemies is all too easy. Even the biggest challenge of the game: avoiding mines, becomes a non-issue once your graboid is bigger and you have gotten the hang of eating everything on sight. Besides, even if you take plenty of damage, you can easily recover your hit points by simply eating more people. And with that you get the entirety of the game's overall challenge. There is certainly plenty more than can be done with this title, and while the developers have expressed no notion to come up with a sequel, it would certainly be fun to play an expanded version of Effing Worms with more enemies, more challenging stages, upgrades and yes, even a basic storyline.

And for those of you wondering how the game ends -it actually does not. You just reach a point where you gain no further upgrades and your worm is as big as it can possibly be. The enemies will never cease to spawn either so you can just keep consuming. By that point, your defense stat and HP recovery ability is so high that it does not matter how much damage you take, you will never truly die (you "can" die manually, simply press the "kill worm" command on the upper left of the screen).

The Verdict

For a small, simple, unassuming game, Effing Worms has proven to be a great bundle of fun. The controls are easy to master and the gameplay itself is addictive. The only sad part is that for a really fun worms game, this one ends a little too soon. In the end, we are forced to weigh the game's value against its lack of replayability (which is actually quite a big thing these days). And with that in consideration, the game is still too fun of an experience to just pass up for its lack of collectibles or achievements. It is a great way to amuse yourself during a quick break, or as a little distraction during those long waiting periods for social networking games. Effing Worms is a definite must-play for any casual player looking for solid fun. We give this game a scared dairy cow's 85/100.

Enjoyed Effing Worms? Why not try Effing Worms 2