Tom is a virus designed to infect products developed by a giant corporation. Your only purpose is to avenge the crazy scientist Dr. X and bring an end to the corporation’s greed.
A Virus Named Tom is an auction-puzzle game that spans across six different billboards (i.e. levels). Each billboard represents a product that is divided into sub-levels. As Tom, your job is to infect each level (which is essentially a database) by connecting grid lines together.
The gameplay resembles connect-the-dots as you rotate the glowing grid lines until they connect. Once this process is complete, the level ends and Tom’s infection spreads.
The game difficulty starts off fairly easy as you work against the timer to connect the grid lines, but later levels become more challenging when the giant corporation becomes aware of your prescience. Things become increasingly difficult when spider-like creatures called anti-virus drones are assigned to patrol certain segments of the map. These little critters get smarter and faster the further you progress through the game.
Later levels are darkened by file encryption. The grid lines cannot be seen during these segments and it becomes a game of memory as you check each section of the map for the right tiles to connect. Other obstacles include self-contained viruses that must be destroyed using timed ‘glitch bombs’. As the game continues on, Dr X upgrades Tom with a ‘GLITCH’ ability to temporarily disable drones. This ability works best when Tom is cornered by more than one drone.
If you’re the type of gamer who doesn’t like to play alone, A Virus Named Tom includes an offline 4-player co-op feature. The game really shines when more than one player is present. As the in-game difficulty increases, one player can divide the work load by isolating enemies while the other three work on connecting the grid lines. Sometimes the game will even force the players to work on certain segments of the map. This requires good co-op skills and precise timing.
When you grow tired of co-op, A Virus Named Tom includes a versus battle mode where players must draw a border around territory (locking the location) to protect it from being captured. The only way to unlock your opponent’s territory is by using ‘glitch bombs’. In some ways, this mode resembles the classic game Qix by Taito.
A Virus Named Tom is a fun game. It takes various genres and combines them into a cohesive, if not slightly unoriginal, gaming experience. The story mode is not only addictive, but very engaging. Unfortunately, versus mode lacks the puzzle elements found in the single-player experience, so its replay value is very limited. But overall, A Virus Named Tom is a triumphant attempt at furthering the puzzle genre.
OS:Windows XP (sp2)
Memory: 500MB RAM
Graphics: Direct X 9.0c / Shader Model 2.0
Hard Drive: 350 MB HD space
Developer: Misfits Attic
Publisher: Misfits Attic
|While simple, they look impressive for 2D|
|Interesting computer sound effects enhance the experience.|
|Challenging puzzles will keep you busy for hours|
|A Virus Named Tom is a unique game. What it lacks in aesthetics it makes up for in gameplay.|