Halfbrick Games has developed a reputation for making imaginative mobile games. After all, who would have predicted a game about slicing fruit would become a worldwide phenomenon? Their latest game, Colossatron, lets you witness the destruction of entire continents, but it doesn’t give you as much control as you might like.
In Colossatron, you play as a giant space dragon who has come to an Earth-like planet to devour everything in sight. Unlike in Super Mega Worm, however, you don’t directly control your creature’s path of destruction. Instead, Colossatron is more like Monsters Ate My Condo, a match-3 game where the chaos and explosions are ancillary.
Colossatron is fueled by colored components. Red, blue, and yellow power nodes fly by while Colossatron is devouring tanks and buildings. Your job is to grab a power node, attach it to Colossatron, and make matches that result in more powerful automatic attacks. For example, placing three identical red nodes together will form a larger node, with a more effective machine gun or missile launcher. You can also combine primary colors to make green, orange, and purple nodes as well.
These power nodes have different effects, depending on when you play the game. You can lock in a certain attack permanently using in-game currency, but the random effects are part of Colossatron’s charm.
As Colossatron grows larger and the level of resistance you face increases, it becomes more difficult to make matches. At a certain point, you may find yourself throwing pieces together randomly and hoping that they make your creature stronger. Occasionally, a random shield or nuke will help you protect Colossatron. While smart planning can help you build a more powerful monster, Colossatron has a mind of its own and will move around the map randomly.
While you’re often a spectator to the destruction, between destroying continents you’ll be able to upgrade Colossatron in small but effective ways. Your first power-up lets you target your attacks in one place, but with a cooldown timer that keeps you from having total control. The lack of direct control is a creative limitation, and may keep you from fully enjoying the mayhem.
Making matches while you watch the chaos unfold is solidly entertaining, and we have to applaud Halfbrick for making a game that feels very unique. Colossatron could use some more mission variety, though, and we’re not sure that replaying the entire game again with harder difficult in “prestige mode” really counts. Special challenge missions would give Colossatron a much-needed change of pace.
If you don’t mind giving yourself over to Colossatron, who has a mind of its own, this is a fun match-3 game with an exciting destructive twist. It’s not particularly deep, but it does have a lot of creativity and charm– not bad for a world-wrecking mechanical monster from space.