Catapult King from Wicked Witch is a relatively new Windows Phone game that is in the Family aisle of the Windows Phone Store and easily could be placed in the Action/Adventure aisle.
The game has you toting your trusty catapult across the countryside battling enemy strongholds and eventually facing off with a nasty dragon that has kidnapped your Princess. Catapult King has over 100 levels of game play, tons of enhancements for your catapult and is just a fun game to pass a little time with.
Catapult King is available for low-memory Windows Phones and Windows 8 devices.
When you first launch Catapult King, you'll run through an animated story illustrating how an evil dragon has kidnapped your Princess. From there, you will have to battle your way through the various levels of the game to eventually take on the evil dragon.
The game lacks a traditional menu and once the opening animations end (or you re-launch the game), Catapult King will take you directly into game play. There is a menu available when you pause game play that will give you access to any power-ups or enchantments you have available, access the gaming store for a few in-app purchase opportunities, visit the gaming level map or re-start your existing level of game play.
The first few levels of the game are more tutorial than difficult to better walk you through the game's mechanics.
The game screen centers around your catapult. Your enemy stronghold/targets sit off in the horizon and your job is to destroy the stronghold and take out any enemy knights that are lurking in its shadows. Across the top of the pause menu you will also find your gaming statistics, which includes your current level, magic potion level, score and treasure counts.
The mechanics of operating your catapult are simple. Tap/hold on the boulder that sits in the catapult's sling and slide your finger down on the screen (essentially pulling back on the sling). An aiming arrow will appear between the catapult's arms to help you aim your shot and a wheel is present at the base of the catapult to adjust your elevation.
You can pinch to zoom out to see a broader view of the battlefield and each level has a limited number of shots. Your goal, as you might guess, is to eliminate all the enemy knights and inflict as much destruction as possible on the strongholds as possible. Think of it as a medieval version of Angry Birds.
Just a quick note about the Windows 8 version of Catapult King is that I tried the game from both a laptop and tablet. I was pleasantly surprised how responsive the game was in using the laptop's touchpad to control the catapult. Game play doesn't synchronize between the two versions but if you have a Windows 8 laptop, you need not worry about the gaming controls.
I did run across a few performance issues in playing Catapult King, mainly with checking the pricing for an in-app purchase and then returning to the game. When you tap on an item that you are considering purchasing in the game's store you are sent to the Windows Phone Store to complete the purchase.
This isn't uncommon and if you opt not to make the purchase, you can either hit the Back button or Cancel to return to your game. For whatever reason, when you try to return to Catapult King after declining a purchase you return to the game but find yourself facing an endless loop where the game is trying to access the in-app store.
There were times that after several minutes the game righted itself but most of the time, the only solution is to exit the game and re-launch. I'm not sure if this is a deal breaker but definitely a pain in the backside.
I was pleasantly surprised with Catapult King. The game is available in the Windows Phone Store as a Family title and I expected a game that caters to our younger audience. What I found was an enjoyable Windows Phone game that should be appealing to children and adults.
The first dozen or so levels are somewhat easy but the game picks up around the thirteenth or fourteenth level where you begin to see stone structures mixed in with the wooden that are more difficult to destroy.
I would have liked to have seen a trajectory line come into play with the game to help you get a general feel for where your catapult shot will go. You can spend magic to add such a feature to a level but otherwise, you are aiming in trial and error fashion. I can see this being a little frustrating to the younger gamers.
Catapult King has nice graphics and animations, challenging game play and overall is a fun game to pass the time with. It should have across the board appeal and is worth a try. If you do try Catapult King, let us know in the comments below what you think of the Windows Phone gaming title.