Angry Birds Rio

Angry Birds Rio

No pigs, but still plenty of angry birds

Angry Birds is arguably the most successful iOS game of all time, with millions of downloads and gameplay mechanics that delight and infuriate gamers in equal measures.

Based on the recently released children’s animated film Rio, Angry Birds Rio makes a few graphical changes here and there but is effectively the same great game that we all know and love. The rival pigs are nowhere to be seen in Angry Birds Rio. Instead the player must fling birds in order to free parrots and other birds that have been caged and captured.

This is achieved in exactly the same way as the original game; you’re presented with a fiendishly designed layout and must use your limited number of birds to destroy said construction and free all the available birds.

Run out of birds and you’ll need to restart the level. The second episode deviates slightly from having you destroying monkeys (standing in for the usual pigs) but the overall effect remains the same: clear the stage in order to continue.

So far, so Angry Birds, but Rovio has introduced a number of new gameplay mechanics that while relatively simple, still make a big difference on how you approach certain stages.

The biggest introduction in Angry Birds Rio are new objects like chains and lights, which are found throughout the first episode’s warehouse stages. While breaking chains can usually unleash crates and other objects that can greatly impact on the rest of the stage, lights usually serve as an annoying slowdown and are best avoided.

The second episode features plenty of dense foliage that can be quite tricky to break through, so again, a surprising amount of planning is needed to ensure that you always have the best bird to tackle each area of a stage.

It’s something off a pity then that Angry Birds Rio doesn’t introduce any new birds to play around with, which, when you consider the content of the film, seems like something of a missed opportunity.

Admittedly the two macaws you rescue at the end of the first episode are finally used in an extremely inventive boss encounter, but this doesn’t happen until the very last stage, meaning you have 59 levels of using the same old birds from both the original game and Seasons.

Or course you could argue that the feathered critters introduced in the original game are perfect anyway, and there’s no denying that the gameplay itself is as fun as ever, but when you see how well those macaws are implemented you’ll be wishing that Rovio had introduced more clever play mechanics.

Still there’s hope that this will happen in later updates, as Angry Birds Rio only gives you access to the first two (of six) episodes. More are planned over the coming months, so there’s still a chance for Rovio to introduce more ideas and birds as the year progresses.

While this may feel like a simple skin update, there are still plenty of reasons to purchase Angry Birds Rio, even if the iPad version offers absolutely nothing (aside from a far higher price) over its iPhone counterpart. The levels are fantastically designed, there are a huge amount of secrets to discover across the 60 levels and trying to 3-star each stage remains as addictive as ever. Buy it now and say goodbye to your free time.

Rated 4 out of 5

Yes it offers more of the same, but Angry Birds Rio remains and incredibly fun and addictive challenge and ultimately, that’s what really matters.


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