Data wing is a small little mobile game that came out a while ago and I love it, I’ve completed the game once and I’m going to go ahead and play it again. And I don’t generally play or particularly like many mobile games.
Data Wing is an interesting indie game on the google play store and apple store developed by Dan Vogt. It is an arcade pseudo-racing, pseudo-platformer with a story and a ton of fun gameplay mechanics all wrapped in this computer themed game. There are multiple different level types, and each has a lot of mechanics, the number of which increases as the game goes on.
The game revolves around you, the data wing, a data transferring device that moves payloads (generally a binary string) from one place to another. You are working with the computer, one which has slowly started becoming more and more sentient. This is all in the mobile phone of a girl called Olivia.
The entire story aspect of the game revolves around her, as you can pick up data in the levels which reveal pieces of the story (a task which may leave you repeatedly restarting the mission until you are able to reach it). There are also a lot of secrets in the game making you want to play more. In addition, the levels have different varieties such as time trials (get there as fast as you can), stopwatch (get there before time runs out) and Reach the exit among many others. I do feel that some of the game modes are a bit underwhelming, I personally liked the timed ones the most as it added an extra layer of difficulty, but all the game modes were entertaining.
The controls are very simple, your character (the triangle data wing) has a thruster, which is always on unless you press both your fingers on each side of the screen, you press on the right side of the screen to rotate right and the left side to rotate left. What’s interesting is that you retain your momentum even f you turn unless you deliberately cancel it. Another cool mechanic is that you can increase your speed drastically by coasting along the boundary walls. There are also boost zones which increase your speed and null zones which completely stop your thruster (so you just glide) and take away your controls. I think all of these are pretty unique except the boost zone (which is a bit generic). Overall this does add to fun gameplay.
The game runs very well on my Android smartphones, I don’t think it ever froze or anything like that. The game looks pretty good, I like its minimalistic style and color choice. However, I do think that some of the character design (the computer’s face, etc.) as they aren’t amazing. Also, the 3d (ish) UI does look good and makes the game feel unique. The level design ranges from very fun to very bland, however, it is more of the former rather than the latter.
In conclusion, I think Dan Vogt did a great job with Data Wing; I think it’s perfect for mobile as on pc it would be a lot more finicky and bad. The story is interesting; even if it doesn’t actually have much related to computers (a lot of it is just jargon) other than the overarching theme. The controls are fantastic, the level design is good, and the art is decent. The game is great for wasting your time on during your commute or whenever. Go play the game it’s free, I wouldn’t even mind playing a $1 or even $2 for it.
Apple Store: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/data-wing/id1206723870
Final Score: 8/10
Plays way too many games and should probably sleep more…