[Review] MPad for the iPad + iPhone

Play More Limited’s MPad allows you to use your iPhone as a controller for the corresponding games on the iPad. As of Today, only 2 games have been released – Snake and Plane, but a third, “Fish”, is coming soon. Both are modern takes on the classic arcade games Snake and Asteroids, complete with bright colors and effects. You only pay for the MPad controller app, which is 99 cents, and you’re promised unlimited free iPad games.


Just like Asteroids, you fly around shooting at rocks, breaking them up and eventually destroying them. Other than the nice graphics and multiplayer, the game does little to differentiate itself from the original. The controller input seems slow, and it’s next to impossible to fly and shoot at the same time. If you rotate your iPod too much, instead of doing wicked combat maneuvers, the plane stays stationary. When trying to navigate a asteroid belt, this makes staying alive tricky. The game has six person multiplayer, so if you have a few friends who are willing to shell out 99 cents each, then you might have a few minutes of fun.


Single player is more of the same, but Snake does a better job of making the game unique by adding power ups to “Battle Mode”, which can be played with AI or locally with friends. You collect items to go faster or become stronger, then hurry back to your base when you want to deposit your extra length for points before the your opponent steals it. The controls have almost no lag, and are much more useable.


Since there are no physical keys on the iPhone, keeping your thumbs on the D-pad is near impossible, but there are large “Left” and “Right” buttons you can use instead. (in Snake only.) This takes some getting used to, but makes the game much more playable than using the D-pad. It connects quickly, uses WiFi or Bluetooth so you don’t need an active internet connection. There doesn’t seem to be too much of a lag, except in Asteroids, but I believe that is just how the game is designed, not the connection itself.

Worth it?

99 cents gets you 2 games, a third in the works, and hopefully more in the months to come – so it is an excellent value. If you’ve already payed nearly a grand for the iPad and iPhone (or iPod Touch) another dollar isn’t too much to ask. The problem is finding others to play with. The games aren’t much fun to play by yourself, and will get old quickly. If you have a group of friends that you can play with, then I would recommend this game. If not, save your money.


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