Most smartphone and tablet first-person games wrestle with virtual analog sticks that fail to capture the pinpoint precision found on console and PC. With this in mind, Killer Bean Studios ditched the left stick entirely with Enemy Strike, a cover based iOS and Android title that is more or less a shooting gallery, with enemy soldiers entering from deliberate points on the screen and players mowing them down with 15 different weapons. The fact that it's simplistic means users can quickly learn the controls and get their fix for minutes or hours a day. This simplicity also works against Enemy Strike, largely because it relies on the same old concept throughout its 250 missions.
As the story goes, what there is of it, aliens ravaged Earth, and it's your job to kill those murderous E.T.s at all costs. You do this through five environments and a handful of objectives that involve taking out snipers, destroying tanks, preventing aliens from breaching your defenses or just slaughtering a certain number of them to advance.
That said, you never move from your position. Instead, you take cover behind the same concrete slab. This is where tedium creeps into the experience, since it's always the same military base, alleyway and city. The same goes for the enemy soldiers. A few types and that's it.
Variety, as it turns out, comes from the numerous weapons and items you can equip. Automatic shotguns, rail guns, energy-based rifles and other dangerous toys are at your disposal so long as you have the required funds. Killer Bean also threw air strikes into the mix, along with bonus goodies that increase damage and money won per round. As expected with most free games these days, superior pieces of equipment cost a lot of cash and gold, but you're still able to get your hands on a cool arsenal of weaker but effective toys; as usual, in-app purchase is there if you want it.
As for the controls, although we often miss the option to move around, excellent touch mechanics make aiming a breeze, and buttons for reloading, changing weapons, taking cover and aiming down the sights are within easy reach. There shouldn't be a single issue with lining up targets and blowing them away.
That in mind, and taking into account the occasional intrusive ad, the key to enjoying Enemy Strike is simple: accept it for what it is. Killer Bean Studios set out to create a specific type of game and did a fine job, so if all you want is an arcade-style shoot-em-up without the hassle of bothersome dual-stick controls, this freemium effort should satisfy your itchy trigger finger.
What's Hot:Over-the-top announcer, great aiming controls, 15 different weapons to choose from, 250 missions.
What's Not:Annoying ad pop-ups, same old environments, not enough mission types.