iNetMania in Review – Board Game Internet 2.0

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When I was growing up, there was no internet; we didn’t have these new fangled handheld game systems kids have today. No, the only form of entertainment we had during the great depression was board games. Ah yes, I can remember spending many hours enjoying such wonderful games like Yahtzee, Clue, Risk and Twister (hey it has a spinner board, that counts). After a long day of entertainment, these games did something else for us. They fed us, kept us warm and gave us a place to sleep. We would eat the pieces, lie on the game boards, and cover ourselves with the twister mat (now you see why I needed that to work). Hey, it was the great depression, what did you expect?

My favorite board game of all was of course, Monopoly. I was so obsessed with this game that at one point in time I had built up a winning streak against my friends and family. It got so bad that I started writing down the totals of all the money and properties I had collected during the course of the game. A way of showing loved ones that not only had I beaten them, but that I had crushed their very souls. Needless to say, this didn’t go over very well. I had family members angrily flipping game boards and stomping off through the house as I began to giggle with glee or sent friends home crying as I performed my world famous “Monopoly Tango” victory dance on the table. Strangely, my friends and family haven’t spoken to me in a number of years, but now with the release of iNetMania, for your iDevice, I hope to change that fact and begin a new dance, the, “iNetMania protect my iPhone from being thrown” victory twist.

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INetMania is based on the award winning board game Servermania created as a promotional piece by TechPad Agency for the 2007 HostingCon tradeshow. Developer Techpad Productions has replicated the feel of the board game for you idevice. Starting out as a brand new Internet Entrepreneur, your goal is to reach the finish line against as many as three other competitors with the most financially successful internet website. You accomplish this by avoiding slumps, “hiring a terrible Account Manager or needing to settle a copyright dispute.” Instead you hope to land on spikes, “investing in an affiliate program that takes off or hiring a PR Agency.”

The controls are simple and easy to use. Select a new game and enter the names of the players or hit quick play and the game will assign each individual a name. A window will pop up with the actions offered to the player, “Pay Marketing, and/or a Roll Die.” Once the player decides to roll the die, a cup will appear. You move the device in a circular motion to create shuffling, when you’re ready tilt the device on its side and the die will roll out. Your icon will move the correct number of locations and show what action was taken, “lose a turn/ double your payday” or what action you need to perform, “roll again/go back 3 spaces.” If a card needs to be drawn from the, “slumps or spikes” decks, the game will perform the action for you. Rinse and repeat to the end of the game. The motion of the shuffling and roll of the die are slow. If you were playing an action game you would think you were experiencing slow down. Considering you could be playing this game with three additional individuals, the slow process will begin to take its toll over the course of a game. If you’re playing against the CPU there’s no option to skip his turn.

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Techpad Productions have done a good job of recreating the look of a game board. Colors are bright and crisp, the words are easy to read the cards are basic in design but have a nice animation as they lift off the board, but you get the same slow motion as the die roll. The sound of the game is what you would expect to hear if you were sitting at a table with friends, the roll of the die and the tapping of pieces moving across the board.

The game is enjoyable if you’ve ever wanted to run a successful website but don’t know how. It takes between 30-40 minutes to complete a two player game. You are able to stop at anytime and comeback later to finish. Replayability comes in the form of 12 Achievements built into the game such as, “finish the game three times or land on five slumps in a game” and you can unlock a bonus piece to use as your icon. There are five un-lockable pieces to go with the four initially offered.

Besides the slow motion shuffle/die roll and inability to skip the A.I.’s turn, there’s also a noticeable lack of online play and leader boards. Playing against likeminded friends in person is good, but when you’re alone, the CPU gets old fast. There’s also no record keeping of wins and losses’ or achievements completed.

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The developer has stated they are patching the slow shuffle/die roll and are considering adding additional game pieces and an option to skip the AI turns. If they go as far as putting in online play with leader boards and record keeping, it will go a long way to improving the overall product. As it is, I can only recommend this game to hardcore board game fans and those heavily interested in the creation and success of a website. I recommend you give iNetMania a, “Slap.”

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App Summary
Title:iNetMania (v1.0)Developer:TechPad Productions
Price:$4.99App Size:4.9 MB
  • Easy to pick-up and play.
  • 5 un-lockables and 12 achievements add to replayability.

 

  • Slow shuffling of die.
  • Unable to skip A.I. turns.
  • No online play ability or leader boards.
  • No records of wins & Losses or achievements obtained.

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