Look Up In Review – augmented reality aliens attacking everywhere!

For those who are not familiar with augmented reality apps, the term refers to apps that combine both the real, physical world, and objects created inside the application. Well I just so happen to have one here today, a game called Look Up by developers Quill Pen Studio.

One of the things about augmented reality is that because it makes use of the built in camera, you are limited to whatever quality the camera can produce at that time. So for example, outside in full daylight, things will look sharp and clean, but at night or in low light situations the quality will diminish significantly. The quality of graphics provided in game are okay, nothing overly fancy or special. The space ships look both good AND bad depending on how close or far they are. Some of the other visuals and effects suffer the same sort of fate. From a bit of a distance it’s great, but when its really close not so much.

The main goal of the game is to destroy the ships before they destroy you. To do that you have to physically turn/look in all directions to find and track them down. You have 2 actions available to you, to aide in this mission. One is your main weapon/gun, the other is a tractor beam. The main weapon is used to attack your enemies, while the tractor beam is used to capture/retrieve bonuses and health upgrades/refreshes.

I had no problems with the tractor beam but I found the main weapon to be a little sluggish. Also there were times where I swear I had hit something but it wouldn’t seem to register.

Game play wise, there are 2 “play” modes and 3 “story” modes available to you. The play modes (180 and 360 respectively) are basically the difference between sitting and standing. 180 will see you not having to move and further than 180 degrees, while 360 mode will have you spinning and looking all over the place ( also, if out in public, aides in making you look quite crazy).

Story modes are Invasion, Hold M’ Up, and multiplayer. Invasion will see you play through 9 levels of increasingly difficult attacks, unlocking new features and game enhancements along the way. Hold M’ Up is an arcade style, how long can you survive type game where they just keep coming one after another and don’t stop until you lose. Multiplayer allows you to partner up with a friend and play together over Bluetooth. Personally I preferred the Hold M’ Up mode as it was the most progressively challenging of the games.

If this game looks confusing, don’t fret. There is a tutorial as well as instruction pages available to you in-game. After playing the tutorial and lower levels of the game you should have no problems managing. Just watch out for poles and oncoming traffic as you play LOL. Personally. although playing the game became easy enough, I still had some trouble. I found you had to move at a bit of a sluggish pace at times or you end up losing everything on screen. Also it seemed that every now and then I would have an enemy just outside my crosshairs and no matter what I did, I could not catch up with it.

In the end I have to say that although I was excited to play this game, the end result was that I was less enthusiastic. The game idea and everything about the game is great. However for me, the up and down quality of the graphics and the sluggishness with the visuals and controls were enough to downgrade my excitement. Although not the best game i’ve played it is definitely a good entry into the augmented reality game world.

App Summary
Title: Look-Up Developer: dagan shtifman
Reviewed Ver: 1.0.0 Min OS Req: 3.1.2
Price: $2.99 App Size: 14.9 MB
  • Clever idea for an augmented reality title
  • Lots of levels/game modes included
  • Graphic quality inconsistent
  • Controls are a bit sluggish


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