In MaXplosion, you play as a little devil named Max who uses explosions to propel himself through levels instead jumping. This may sound like ‘Splosion Man on Xbox Live Arcade, and that’s because it practically is, only in your pocket.
Max can use three explosions before he has to land, which automatically recharges his explosion meter. The level design keeps this in mind with jumps that require you to use each of those three explosions in the right spot to move ahead. For example, some areas have rockets that propel you upwards when you explode around them, and you must hit three consecutively to reach a high platform.
While there are only 17 levels and three boss fights in MaXplosion, they become progressively longer and more challenging. Some of the later levels can take around 10 minutes to complete. Luckily, frequent checkpoints and the fact that enemies don’t respawn when you die prevent the game from becoming frustrating.
Max the devil-hog.
For completionists, there is plenty of replay value in MaXplosion. Each level has a par time to reach, energy atoms to collect, and a uranium bar hidden in the zone. Plus, Game Center integration means leaderboards and achievements, although the achievements failed to register for us on both our iPhone and iPad.
MaXplosion’s control scheme consists of a slider and bomb button. These are mostly reliable, and the slider allows for a large amount of control over Max’s speed. One interesting note is that when pixel-doubled on the iPad, the controls refit themselves and are actually even easier to use than on an iPhone.
Many platformers bring in a unique mechanic and fail to build levels around it. MaXplosion is quite the opposite– it’s very similar to an existing XBLA game, but the great level design makes it well worth the $0.99 price tag.