The Roman god Jupiter has banished the god of war Mars to the red planet that bears his name. And now he’s going to take revenge with his own army of Roman Martian soldiers. Defend your outpost from Mars’ army in this action game for iOS devices, Android and Google Play (reviewed on iPad here).
In Romans from Mars, Martian soldiers march from the top horizon of the screen toward your outpost, and you must tap on the screen to fire arrows to stop them. The Martians move at different speeds, so you’ll have to time your shots carefully. Destroy all the Martians to complete the level, but don’t let too many reach your base at the bottom of the screen or it’s Game Over! It kind of reminds me of the Arrow mini-game from Game & Wario on Wii U.
Complete enough stages and you’ll be able to temporarily use the power of the gods to help you out in battle. When a meter is full, you can hold your finger down on the touch screen to summon lightning from Jupiter, then you can move your finger around the screen to zap some Martians. Later you’ll earn other powers. Swipe one finger across the screen to create ice to freeze the armies, or swipe two or three fingers to create lava or earth blockades.
At the end of each level, you’ll earn coins that you can use to upgrade your equipment in the shop, like faster firing arrows, a larger blast radius, or a stronger fort that can take more hits. The game is free-to-play, but the only problem is that it gets very hard, very quickly unless you use real money to buy the best upgrades. But that’s par for the course with these kinds of games. Otherwise, it’s a neat little action title.
While you do shoot exploding arrows at goofy Martian soldiers who burst into pieces when hit, the graphics are pretty silly and cartoony otherwise. Reading skill is helpful but there are also picture cues to tell you what to do. Younger players may still get frustrated at the difficulty, though.