Breaking down the Holy Trinity of .IO games

February 12, 2019 — by Rohan Kumar and Oliver Ye

1. Surviv.io (5 out of 5 Falcons) — reviewed by Rohan

It was not love at first sight. To be completely honest, there is nothing lovable about three circles that move sporadically around, absorb an assortment of colorful shapes and discharge lines at other circles. However, controlling these round figures to beat up toilets, blow up barrels and shoot other round figures full of colorful bullets can be extremely addicting.

After playing a couple games of the 2D battle royale, I was hooked. A few days later, I pretty much knew every single gun in the game (there are 40 by the way, so it was quite an achievement). It turns out my friends were also surviv.io addicts, so every day after school, we whipped out our Facebook Messenger apps, texted the code to our group chat and got last place in squads. Getting into a match is fast and easy, so it’s essentially instant fun with your (imaginary) friends whenever you’re bored.

Fun in Surviv.io never ends: it’s fun for beginners and fun for veterans. After a year of playing, there are still new things for me to try. There are regular updates that bring new weapons, locations and game modes. If you start winning too often (like I do, of course), you can always challenge yourself with solo duos or squads. If that’s too easy, try winning without any weapons.

By the way, if you want to call yourself a true Surviv.io addict, you have to beat my record of 1,385 damage with fists only in solo squads.

 

2. Shellshock.io (4.75 out of 5 Falcons) — reviewed by Rohan

Shellshock.io is a pretty unconventional game. Bullets move at approximately negative 5 miles per hour and egg avatars use egg cartons as ammunition containers. However, as the first .IO game I really got into, Shellshock.io introduced me to the power of simplistic graphics and straightforward gameplay. With zero experience, you can jump into a Shellshock.io game and have a ton of fun. Creating a game is easy, and you can easily go toe-to-toe with all your friends in a full-on egg brawl.

With four classes, there are many unique and interesting ways to scramble, poach and crack your friend’s eggs. Shotguns for getting up close and egg-sonal, snipers for practicing high-level prediction skills (otherwise known as blind guessing), assault rifles for some good ol’ spraying and praying and rocket launchers for the people who can’t aim (no offense).

The game has been evolving, progressively becoming more and more fun. At its creation in the fall of 2017, there were only three classes and nothing to unlock. Now, I play to earn myself some currency eggs that I can spend to make my avatar egg look more stupid than it already does. There are also bigger, cooler maps and skins for weapons.

My only complaint is that the grenades in Shellshock.io have an uncanny resemblance to exploding boomerangs. Every time I throw a grenade up the ladders to get those campers on the top of the platform, it comes back down and explodes my poor egg persona. Why can’t eggs be grenade-proof?

 

3. Agar.io (4 out of 5 Falcons) — reviewed by Oliver Ye

Agar.io seems almost like a myth today; only the most experienced .IO gamers even remember it. However, the old is gold motto applies in this case: It’s still one of the most legendary .IO games out there.

Agar.io is a simple game: You attempt to be the most gluttonous cell out there, grabbing up some tasty, colorful morsels from the ground or absorbing other wannabe gluttons to make you an even bigger glutton. Because big fat cells are slower than small skinny cells, it is sometimes beneficial to split yourself up or eject pieces of yourself like a blobby machine gun.

The simple yet creative (and sometimes hilariously weird) mechanics of the game, along with the straightforward of objective of eating as much as you can (which is also my goal at parties with free food), make Agar.io an extremely satisfying game to play. It also has game modes for everyone.

The free-for-all mode, where players try to get on the leaderboard for size and stay there, is perfect for people who have nothing better to do than run away from other blobs until they get to the leaderboard by pure luck. The battle royale mode is perfect for people who are pressed for time, and the teams mode is fitting for people who can’t survive the other two modes.

I personally get a bit tired of trying to be the biggest blob: Why be the biggest when you can be the most helpful? My professional altruism strat, where you grow big and then split into a bunch of smaller blobs to let other blobs absorb parts of you like a tasty cell buffet, is quite fulfilling. Except when someone absorbs all of you with one split (where did gratitude go?).

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