When deciding whether to buy a game or not, some people look at the icon first and foremost. Developers are aware of this and will usually strive to make it as attractive as possible. What drew me to this game however, was the title. Kickin Momma by Hothead Games is a physics puzzle game with a badass name, but slightly less than badass play value.
Based around the exact same concept as Peggle, Kickin Momma features a large blue alien of undisclosed gender (though we’re gonna go with female due to the title). This large matriarch desires gem, and apparently these can be found either in a store, or just floating around in a big ol’ canyon about 50 feet from the aforementioned store. Sounds reasonable.
So how is she gonna get the gems? Will she use hooks? Ropes? Perhaps some intricate gravity gun. No, she’s going to kick her offspring into the canyon, hoping that on the way, the mini-mommas will crash into as many gems as possible, dislodging them from their floaty prisons and causing them to fall to the bottom of the canyon, where she has set up an intricate vacuuming system. It’s unclear why she doesn’t use the vacuuming system to suck up the gems directly, but we’re not going to split too many hairs.
The controls are extremely simple to pick up, as all you do is determine the trajectory for the soon-to-be kicked alien babies. Wherever you touch the screen, that’s where the tip of the trajectory would be. This may have proven to be a problem as your finger tip obstructs the screen, but Hothead Games saw to that by adding a mirror-like effect focusing on where you’re pointing in the top left corner of the screen. As such you are always in perfect control of where your projectiles head to. The blue alien projectiles will then bounce off their target, at an angle determined by where they hit it.
As a Peggle clone, Kickin Momma does a good job at adding just enough to not be identical. There are rocks that need to be hit twice to break, bombs, special peggles that give different bonuses.
There are 36 levels across 3 worlds, with the promise of more worlds to come. Each level has a minimum number of gems that you need to pick up, in order to be able to progress through the game, however the minimum amount is extremely easy to get so you shouldn’t have a problem with it. You begin each level with a small number of shots, but gain more according to how well your projectiles do. With good enough throws you’re guaranteed way more shots than you could ever need, even if you decide to collect all 10 gems that are found on each level.
Like Peggle, Kickin Momma revolves a lot around which trajectory you choose, but it allows for more control over your projectile as the tiny mirror will allow you to choose just the right spot for your kid to bounce off of. You’ll be getting bonuses based on how many pegs you hit, how long the distances you travel are, how many gems you collect in one shot, etc.
The gameplay itself is a bit different from Peggle but what really sets the game apart from the famous title is the huge amount of work that went into the graphics and animations. Kickin Momma has beautiful vibrant colors, funny animations (including some dance moves), and an overall wacky fun atmosphere. As just about every new game, Kickin Momma also has Game Center integration with leaderboards and achievements.