Dr. Awesome is a surgery game similar to Trauma Center but not as in-depth. Dr. Awesome is created by ngmoco, creators of the much anticipated yet-to-be-released title, Rolando. With Dr. Awesome, ngmoco brings us a fun and exciting little game but polishes it up to make it seem more than it really is.
I went into Dr. Awesome thinking that it was going to be a Trauma Center clone. Once I booted it up I was really anticipating seeing all of the unique gameplay elements that ngmoco was going to bring with Dr. Awesome. Imagine Trauma Center on the iPhone, I personally think it could work perfectly. Little did I know, Dr. Awesome is one gameplay element repeated over and over with a higher difficulty as you progress. No there is no drag your finger across the screen to cut open a stomach, no there is no use the laser to burn off polyps. Now I know you get what you pay for and Dr. Awesome is only $1.99, not $49.99 like Trauma Center, but there was still hope in me that it could be a smaller version of Trauma Center. I was wrong though.
What Dr. Awesome does, it does… awesome. The main gameplay mechanic at work here is the tilt function of the iPhone. In Dr. Awesome you tilt your iPhone to control the “powerful surgical device” that is used for cutting away pieces of a cell. To cut pieces off you must draw a line from one end of the cell wall to the other end. Once you have cut off a certain amount of the cell the virus will perish. If the virus swims over and hit’s the line you’ve drawn before you complete it then you die. You have three chances to save the person and some people have more than one virus. As you progress in the game you are faced with more types of viruses and different factors that affect the difficulty of the game. For example later on a smaller virus will actually travel up the line you drew and kill you if you don’t end your line fast enough. Another example is that some viruses travel along the outside of the cell walls so you must avoid trying to end your line where they are located.
Dr. Awesome looks and plays great. The one feature that I found most unique was the fact that Dr. Awesome takes the names from your address book and uses them as the patients names in the game. I have to admit it makes you chuckle when you find out you are doing surgery on your best friend, or your father-in-law. This little added features brings a lot to the game in my opinion and if that isn’t enough ngmoco has thrown in achievements for your to strive after.
All in all Dr. Awesome is a great game for $1.99. If you don’t set your expectations too high then you won’t be let down. I hope to someday see ngmoco give us a full fledged Trauma Center clone but until then I think Dr. Awesome will feed that surgical hunger.