The Return of Pestilence

The Return of Pestilence

Exterminate as many bugs as you can!
Publisher / Developer: BitOrbit
Release Date: 14 July 2014

RecordNow 10 Music Lab Premier

androidCombine pesky bugs, a ball, a labyrinthine maze and your tilt sensitive mobile device and what do you get? Why… Pestilence, a truly innovative game from BitOrbit that will keep you glued to your screen as you steer a ball around the play area and crush pesky bugs before they reach red target holes.

But wait, isn’t the title of this article “The Return of Pestilence”?

Why yes, it’s about the encore release to Pestilence… And as you can expect, The Return of Pestilence brings even more fun to the table.

Here are all the links in case you have not tried either of the free games from BitOrbit before:

About The Return of Pestilence

pestilencelogoThe original “Pestilence” game introduced an innovative idea of combining tilting with bug squashing, gameplay that is continued in the sequel too. “The Return of Pestilence” brings even more levels, more types of bugs, more weapons and obviously more fun.

The goal of the game is to exterminate as many pests as possible before they can reach the holes marked with red rings. The gameplay combines the ball-in-labyrinth style with the tap-to-squish bugs game type resulting in an addictive bug extermination experience. Here’s what differentiates “The Return of Pestilence” from its competition:

  • Unique AI and physics based animation for ultra-realistic bug behaviour rendering (definitely not for users afraid of bugs)
  • Multiple types of bugs, some smaller but faster and easier to kill, others bigger, slower but tougher and so on
  • Real-time pseudo-3D shadows for each moving element
  • Power-ups that allow you to freeze, saw, attract and destroy the bugs faster than rolling over them
  • Integration with Google Play Game Services to share your score with others and unlock achievements

The Return of Pestilence is fun yet difficult enough to create an addiction. Even better, the game is available for free on Google Play.

Our Review

The first thing that came to our mind while playing The Return of Pestilence was that it reminded us of an old board game known as Labyrinth. In that game you tilted a wooden surface and rolled around a ball trapped in a maze while avoiding holes along the way. The Pestilence series adds an extra twist with the introduction of bugs that spring out of green holes and scurry towards red target holes.

You must roll your ball around the maze with the help of the tilt sensors of your mobile device, and hopefully your ball gains enough momentum to squish these realistic looking bugs before too many escape from the maze. You have a set number of lives in each level that reduces for each escapee; it will be game over once that reaches zero.

To help you out on your journey through the 30+ levels in The Return of Pestilence, you will find 3 powerups that appear randomly on the board. The powerups include: letting you squash bugs with a touch, freezing bugs, and destroying all bugs on the screen at once. There are also 4 extra powerups that you can purchase from the shop using the Pestilence Coins (PC) you win in each level, and these include: placing mines, turning your ball into a moving saw, attracting bugs like a huge bug magnet, and speed boosting your ball.

Our Verdict

We like games with simple ideas and it turns out that the Pestilence series wins itself brownie points for introducing squishable bugs. These bugs come in a variety of sizes and their unique AI makes them behave very distinctly. The levels in the game start off easily but as you go further in the game they get more complex with spinning pegs, cul-de-sacs, and obstacle fields for the bugs to hide in. We definitely like the look of the levels although we did long for themed tilesets for more graphical variety.

The Return of Pestilence is a vast improvement over the first game in the series with 5 new levels, and the addition of powerups and new sound effects; the game is more forgiving in the first few levels too. As we had a lot of fun with the game, we heartily recommend this action-based game for everyone who yearn to turn their mobile device into a tilt-fest arena of bug squishing gore… although those with insectophobia might think otherwise.



The Verdict


The Good: Frantic squishing fun | Exploits an often neglected feature of mobile devices – tilting | Distinctly different bug behavior | Interesting level designs | Powerups galore inject life into the game

The Bad: Could do with themed graphics for future versions | Insectophobias will cringe at the lifelike bugs | Frustration level ramps up at the higher levels

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