August 24, 2011 in Games (E)
[prMac.com] Anchorage, Alaska - FunWithElectricity today is pleased to announce Cosmic Pool 1.1.1 for iOS, an update to their Game that challenges the player to 3D eight-ball against the computer in the zero gravity of outer space. Gameplay takes place inside a hollow, transparent sphere, cube, or pyramid floating in space with planets, stars, and galaxies in the background. Viewing the complexities of the three-dimensional gamespace is simple with real-time, 360-degree, 3D pan, tilt, and zoom. Featuring ultra-realistic 3D graphics and physics, players choose a target ball, line up a simple, carom, or combination shot (either manually or automatically), and attempt to send a striped or solid color ball out through one of four or six small holes that act as pockets of a pool table. The player continues shooting until they miss a shot, and then the computer takes its turn. Also included is a two-player mode, where two opponents can play against each other.
Gameplay is inside one of three geometric volumes: sphere, cube, or pyramid. The sphere is a shape resembling a Plexiglas sphere that has a six circular holes at N, E, S, W and both poles, each hole approximately one and a half times the width of one of the billiard balls. The cube is like a Plexiglas cube with six holes or pockets. The pyramid is a tall tetrahedron having only four holes. When played at the Easy level, the cube and pyramid have additional pockets in each corner. Each volume type has its own unique properties that influence gameplay and strategy.
The game includes four levels of difficulty, independent of the enclosing volume. At the Easy level, players can pocket balls through holes in the sides and corners of the geometry. At the Medium level, there are no corner goals, just holes in the sides. The computer misses shots occasionally. When set to the Hard level, gameplay is the same as the Medium level, except the computer rarely misses a shot. Finally, at the Master level the cue ball is now aimed directly - the player no longer has the thumbwheel to assist in aiming shots and enforcing the rules. Players can miss shots and break rules at this level. For example, in eight-ball the first ball players hit with the cue ball must be of the player's type. Breaking this rule costs one turn. The thumbwheel will not allow players to break this rule, but at the Master level players can. At this level, the computer rarely misses a shot.
At the start of each game, there is either an 18-ball cluster or a 28-ball cube at the center of the gamespace. The 28-ball mode is a little harder because there are more balls of the opposite type in play that can obstruct shots. The player gets the advantage of having the break, and the results determine whether they will play stripes or solids, odd or even numbered balls. After pocketing all the balls of one type, the player must sink the eight-ball to win the game.
Cosmic Pool incorporates an innovative "thumbwheel" at the bottom of the screen for selecting a target ball. Rotating the wheel, consisting of all the balls remaining, permits selection of a target ball. A single tap on the thumbwheel selection selects the target ball, and a double tap generates a new thumbwheel of possible shots. By only displaying legal shots, the thumbwheel helps instruct the player in the rules of the game. Shot vectors appear onscreen as various possibilities are tested. Players can select single, combination, or carom shots, pressing the target button to shoot. At any time, the player can rotate the gamespace 360-degrees through the x and y-axes and pinch to zoom in or out. With three or more shot vectors not uncommon, it is often necessary to rotate the view to determine if the shot will work.
* Three geometry types to play within (sphere, pyramid, and cube) with two starting ball configurations (28-ball cube or 18-ball ellipsoid)
* Challenging computer opponent
* Shot calculator that simplifies the challenge of playing pool without gravity
* Single player mode vs. computer, or dual player mode one player vs. another player
* Free aiming mode for expert players
* Tutorial mode that demonstrates how to play the game
* Game Save / Resume
* Master level where player no longer uses the shot thumbwheel and can directly aim the cue ball
* Universal app displays graphics optimized for each different iOS device
Additional features include a Resume function to pause play, an in-depth tutorial, and a Master level where players can aim manually, planning shots beyond the comprehension of the automatic shot selector. Players are advised to familiarize themselves with the game rules and strategy at lower levels before advancing to the Master level. The best strategy involves getting difficult to reach balls (deep in corners) into play early in the game.
Playing Cosmic Pool presents the kind of challenge where luck plays almost no part. Planning a shot is half the fun, as the player cycles through a myriad of possible target balls, shots, and vectors. Taking the shot is equally fascinating, as the iOS device performs the requisite math to calculate highly complex interactions. Players never grow tired of watching the spectacle of balls colliding with each other and the inner walls of the game volume in a colorful display of Newtonian mechanics. Lending sensory impact to shots are cosmic sound effects of each ball bouncing off walls and white impact ripples visible in the Plexiglas emanating from the point of impact.
"There were numerous challenges in developing a game whose physics and graphics are as complex as Cosmic Pool," commented independent developer Leon Kania. "Now, I am happy to offer players numerous challenges in mastering the subtleties of 3D eight-ball in the zero gravity of outer space."
* iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
* Universal app optimized for all iOS displays
* iOS 3.2 or later (iOS 4.3 tested)
* 6.6 MB
Pricing and Availability:
Cosmic Pool 1.1.1 is $1.99 (USD) and available worldwide through the App Store in the Games category. Review copies are available upon request.
Based in Anchorage, Alaska, FunWithElectricity was founded by Leon Kania in 2011. The company is a project of his to develop cool apps catering to customers who are interested in playing games that are substantial and challenging. His goal is to raise the overall level of quality and challenge in the arena of gaming on mobile devices. Copyright (C) 2011 Fun with Electricity. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod, and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.