Milton Bradley’s (though now made by Hasbro) classic board game “Battleship” makes it’s way to Apple’s iPhone and iPod Touch. Battleship was a game my brother and used to play as kids. I enjoyed the game but after having played the Electronic Battleship at a friend’s house I wanted one of those. In the electronic version the positions of the ships had to be programmed in and then when the game was played, you’d enter the grid location you wanted to strike and then pressed a fire button which would play a sound effect of a missile firing and if you actually hit something then you would hea and explosion and see a panel light up with a little red light to indicate a hit.
Many years later when hand held electronics were becoming quite popular, I bought several of the games including, Yahtzee, Connect Four, Battleship, Mastermind, and several game show games. It was handy in the bring with you and play on trips or have handy. Ultimately, the one I ended up carrying around the most was the Yahtzee game, but Battleship was probably my second favorite of the bunch. It could be played as a one player game or a two player game, but also had the fun of the sound effects of the missile launch and the hit which could be turned off if you wanted to play it in a quiet place. But they ended up being bulky to carry around as single application games. So they tend to sit in a box not being played.
So naturally, the iPhone and iPod Touch application solves the problem of being bulky as it takes up no more room than the iPhone or iPod Touch already does, it’s just uses a fraction of the memory and it allows you to store several games including the Yahtzee, Connect Four, Battleship, and Mastermind games I mentioned above. And the iPhone and iPod Touch can hold a lot more games and other applications as well all in a more pocket sized device than any of the handheld versions were.
The new Battleship application adds several playing options well beyond the original game. The game includes sound effects, and even little animated clips of each of the various ships when they are hit and when they sink complete with sound effects and military like drumming at the start of the game. I like the Salvo mode which allows the player to select as many targets as they have ships, so at the start of the game you have five missiles to launch and so does your opponent, once you hit something you can quickly aim at all the surrounding spaces to sink the ship and decrease your opponent’s ability to launch as many missiles, thereby gaining an advantage of being able to strike more squares per turn than your opponent. Although it’s not as much fun if your opponent has knocked out more of your ships than you have of theirs.
There is also a “Super Weapons” game which increases your playing options. The more games you play unlocks more advanced weapons to use such as dropping a mine which will travel one square per turn until it hits something or a frag bomb which strikes five squares in an x pattern at once. There is also a multi-player mode which allows you to play opponents either over a Wi-Fi connect, bluetooth connection, or taking turns with one iPhone. It would be really nice if there was an option to play with friends more remotely than a network connection, so if need be a game could be played over the course of several hours or days.
The Battleship game is put out by Electronic Arts under license from Hasbro. And it can be found in the App Store by clicking here. If you’re also interested in Connect Four, click here. Yahtzee, click here. or Mastermind, click here.