Slither.io Review: It Comes Crawling On Your Mobile6,800
The Slither.io Android game is actually a port of the original PC version of the game; it's a multiplayer game where players control a snake with the aim of growing it into the longest snake on the server. Slither.io is a free to play game where players need to consume dots which are found all over the map and are dropped by other players when they die. It features a combination of classic Snake gameplay and Agar.io which was released in 2015.
The graphics in the mobile version of Slither.io are identical to the graphics seen in the PC version of the game which is great as this usually changes in ports; it uses cartoon-style graphics for the game and also the home screen which is nice.
Slither.io is played on a black hexagon shaped background with neon dots covering the map; these are the dots that players need to consume to grow in size. Being neon makes them easy to spot on the dark colored map and the snakes in the game are also relatively brightly colored. The snakes in the game are clearly visible in the arena which is crucial considering this is a PvP game.
While it's conspicuous what's happening on screen, the graphics are rather simplistic and are quite bland overall.
Slither.io for Android and iOS features easy as a pie gameplay on the surface. Yet if you scratch it, there's actually a lot of skill to the game; players start with a small snake and need to consume the dots on the map by moving over them. The aim of the game is to survive and grow the snake into the largest one on the server, there is no end to the game however and it can be played indefinitely. There is no way to save and load a game, each game sessions ends when the game is closed even when playing against the AI.
Touching the border of the map will kill the player and running into other players also equals death; when the player dies, they drop all of their dots which can be collected by other players. This 'combat' is an important part of the game, players are able to ambush and trap others in the game so that they can collect their dots. Any players can kill another snake in the game which even allows anyone starting the game to kill a much larger snake for their points. Trapping other players is done be circling them and keeping them trapped in the circle until they touch the trapper and die.
While trapping is an important gameplay mechanic for killing other players, there is another mechanic which can be used for killing snakes. The boost button allows the player to move at a much faster speed for a limited amount of time; boosting causes the player to drop their dots behind them however and the size of their snake will shrink as a result. Boosting can be used to quickly travel across the arena or to catch other players off-guard and kill them.
There are no gameplay difference in offline mode of Slither.io for Android and iOS. Download it and you will be placed in an arena filled with AI snakes which behave in a similar fashion to actual players. This makes the offline mode a great place to learn the basics of the game and keeps it entertaining for players who can't get a consistent Wi-Fi connection.
The online mode does have connection issues and is quite laggy at times to the point that the game can freeze for several seconds. Including an offline mode does help with the frustration of the connection issues but it is disappointing still.
It does feature a more competitive side to the gameplay with the addition of a scoreboard on the server; each server has a top 10 scoreboard which is visible to all players. Reaching this size will be obvious as the player's name would be highlighted to them on the board. There are no real rewards for achieving a place on the top 10 however.
Players have the option of three different types of controls which can be accessed in the "Settings" menu on the home page; each method of control allows the player to control the game through the touchscreen on the smartphone.
This is one of the weakest points of Slither.io for iOS and Android; much of the game is about being able to see what's close to the player on the map and the controls require the players to place their fingers in positions that create 'blind spots' on the map. It's frustrating but unavoidable for games of this type.
Despite the small annoyances, the varied control options are perfect for most players. Each option is similar but the "Joystick" method adds the classic joystick and buttons on the screen for the player to use instead or directing the snake by touching the direction on the screen.
Replay Value 6/10
The gameplay in Slither.io can become quite repetitive over time as a result of the limited gameplay features. Each new server is a different game however which does keep the game interesting for quite some time; playing online against other players has the highest replay value between the two modes as every game is completely unpredictable.
Regardless of the mode, the Slither.io keeps track of the players highest score and displays it on the home screen; this is nice for players who enjoy beating their own records and achieving high scores for personal gain. The online highscore board is great for more competitive players who are looking to prove themselves against other players.
The overall replay value of the game is quite mixed, some players will enjoy the simple nature of the gameplay; it allows players to be more casual with the game and return with long gaps between playing the game but it also allows for some level of competitive play. At the same time, however, such gameplay approach does make Slither.io quite repetitive and tedious after a little while.
The Bottom Line
Slither.io is the hit multiplayer game from Steve Howse; players control a snake with the aim of becoming the largest snake on the server by eating dots and killing other players. It began life a PC browser game and was later released for mobile devices where it's remained a free to play game. While this is a dedicated versus game, the mobile version of the game also features an offline mode for players to battle the AI.
Slither.io is a solid port for Android and iOS and fans of the PC version would definitely enjoy it on their mobile devices. It's simple enough so that all ages can understand the game but it also provides players with enough room to become quite skilled at it; the simple gameplay is both a positive and negative as there is littler diversity so Slither.io can be quite repetitive at times. Matches can be relatively short and the offline mode makes this a great game to play when traveling or when there's no Wi-Fi. It's filled with action and fast-paced gameplay without placing too much pressure on newcomers to the game.
Pros : Offline mode to play against AI;
Several control options;
Different skins to customize the snake with.
Cons : Awkward controls;
Replay Value 3.0