Friday, 16 September 2011

Rock of Ages - 360/PC

Last night, I finally got round to putting some time into Rock of Ages on 360 - a title I've been looking forward to since last summer.

I'm glad to say this latest game by ACE Team - the minds behind mental brawler Zeno Clash - plays just as good as it looks, with players hurtling their moon-like boulder down obstacle-strewn slopes in a bid to smash their opponent's stronghold.

But that's only half the story, as Rock Of Ages takes the player on a twisted and extremely funny trip through history, complete with angry bovines, pissed-off elephants and projectiles galore.

The game is split into two parts: the attacking stage - where the player guides their boulder down a twisting slope, smashing defences on the way to break open their opponent's gate - and a defensive stage - where the player erects defences in a bid to halt their foe's march to glory.

Every time your boulder collides with an object, money is dropped into your coffers, which in turn can be used to either construct a weird and wonderful array of traps and obstacles, or poured into your boulder to give it extra ramming powers.

It's a frantic game of cat and mouse as both sides desperately try and place defences before trundling their boulder to its destructive conclusion and it's heart-breaking when your rock tumbles off the edge of the course, giving your opponent a slight time advantage.

The art style and sound effects have a distinct whiff of Monty Python about them, with paper cut-out armies scattered around the sloping worlds, while historic figures leap excitedly around in full cardboard cut-out glory.

The humour runs through to the game's playful cut scenes, with plenty of pop culture references thrown in for good measure which adds to the off-the-wall flavour.

Rock of Ages is a delicious mix of tower defence and Marble Madness and a game which plays beautifully. And with multiplayer options to explore and a decent single player campaign to roll through, this is yet another unmissable game to add to your download queue.

Rock of Ages is currently available from the Xbox 360's marketplace for 800 points, while PC users can grab it from Steam for £6.99. A PS3 version is on its way, but no release date has been set.

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