From The Depths It Came
Right under your feet lies something no one has ever seen before. Something so gruesome and horrible, that old B-Movies were made to tell people of its tale. Inspired by the movie Tremors, Effing Worms shows exactly what happens when man, dog and cow meet a creature that burrows underground and has an insatiable hunger for flesh. But unlike in the movie where the hero kills the monster and gets the girl, in Effing Worms you play the role of the hungry creature from the depths of the earth, whose only purpose is to eat and grow. Can you satiate your hunger or will you become fertilizer to the farmer’s crops? Let us find out in Effing Worms.
The View From Down Below
We never thought that eating stick men would be so much fun, until now. Effing Worm’s visuals are simple yet appealing. With just the right amount of animations and visual eye candy to keep players immersed in the game. While the city in the background could have used some more textures to improve its look, the main focus in the graphics was given to the helpless potential meals you get to feast on.
Looking at the potential banquet in front of you might not be as appetizing at first glance but once you take a closer look, you will definitely see a meal worth eating. Little things in the game’s visuals might get overlooked in the beginning but once you have noticed all the minute details the artists of the game put in, you will definitely appreciate their efforts. Things like moving threads on the tank’s wheels, flickering flame from an enemy soldier’s jetpack or even the running animations of the local farm animals. All of these can easily be overlooked, mainly due to the size of the sprites used in the game, especially once the bombs fall – yes, bombs will fall. But for those who take a while and look closely, they will definitely be amazed at the details and animations Effing Worms have.
Later in the game, the government sends in the cavalry to try to end your eating rampage. Soldiers, tanks and fighter jets are but some of the enemies and prey you will face in the later stages. But once you have grown to the size no local infantry can handle, they send in the really big guns to try and stop your eating rampage. Bomber planes, robots and other high tech weapons of mass destruction will fill the screen, along with mines, bullets and other destructive weapons that really add to the intensity of the game. All of the variety of enemies and prey presented to the player in Effing Worms are outstanding to look at despite most of them being simple stick figures. The smart use of animation on certain things like explosions and moving tank threads makes the game look more believable and amusing.
That Rumbling Sound From Under the Ground
Everything is subtle before the storm hits. This is how the music starts off in the game, just like in the movie Jaws, everything sounds peaceful in the beginning, but once our hungry underground predator emerges from beneath, the music shifts into overdrive to a heavy metal inspired tune. Creating chaos and mayhem while listening to an ear bleeding metal tune might sound like a scene from a concert by Death Metal bands, but this choice of music is spot on in Effing Worms, since it captures the feel of what is happening in the game pretty well. Sadly, there is only a handful of music provided, so the rampage music gets old pretty quickly. It is a good thing we have some heavy metal mp3s in our music player, so we can continue to rock on and feast to our heart’s content.
Sound effects in the game are well presented, with everything you would expect to hear from a scene where an enormous man eating worm comes to town. Human screams, guns firing and ear deafening explosions can be all heard in Effing Worms and they sound great for a game of this genre. The huge variety of sound effects in the game totally immersed us in the setting of the game and really added to the fun of playing as a giant carnivorous worm eating waves of soldiers and tanks.
Drive Thru Dining
Effing Worms is effing fun, since you get to play as a giant worm burrowing underground, getting ready to burst from underneath your prey’s feet at any moment. It is like when we were kids playing with our plastic Tyrannosaurus Rex and G.I. Joes. That guilty pleasure of having our prehistoric predator feast on defenseless plastic soldiers has been with us since our childhood days and getting to relive that feeling is truly satisfying. The controls in Effing Worms are basic and simple, press the W key button to move forward, and A and D key buttons to turn left and right respectively. While it is pretty simple, mastering your worm’s movements might take a little practice since you will not be mowing down immobile enemies on the ground. Flying soldiers, fighter jets and bombers all appear on later levels and learning to make our hungry earthworm do lunging tricks will be the only way to reach them. Other strategies also involve dodging and jumping over land mines laid on the ground by enemy planes trying to blow you up once you resurface.
Eat up and grow big. This is the motto you will be living by while playing Effing Worms. While you continue to munch on pets, cows and humans, your growth counter diminishes and once it reaches zero our growing boy enters a growth spurt. Eating multiple meals successively triggers a combo rampage that does not only enhances our worm’s size – alright, that did not sound right, but also gives a speed bonus. Of course reaching a certain size has its advantages when it comes to doing combos, but being a humongous carnivorous worm also brings issues to the meal table. The bigger you grow the larger target you become. Enemy mines and bomber’s payloads can easily hit you now so being strategic on when to burrow out of the ground to grab that next meal is the key to not being blown to smithereens.
Consuming a certain number of enemies progresses our juvenile meat grinder to the next level of the game. Although players will have a hard time knowing it since the stages do not change at all and only the new wave of enemies give the sign of level progression in the game. Scores accumulated in the game can be sent to an online leader board where the scores are tallied and compared to other players worldwide, which adds some replay value to the game. Once all levels are cleared, an option to continue your rampage against an infinite amount of enemies is offered. While continuing the fun and chaos unrestrictedly, growing to a size too big for the player’s computer resources to handle might result in extreme slowdown in gameplay.
Thank You for the Meal
Once the chaotic feast has ended the scores are submitted online. Effing Worms by Effing Games has proved to us that it does not need to be an overly sophisticated game with gorgeous graphics with an orchestrated sound track to become a fun and addictive game worth playing. With its simple presentation and basic gameplay, Effing Worms kept us playing even after all the stages were cleared. While expanding the game’s stages and music tunes would totally help increase the game’s overall replay value - we believe these are but minor gripes that we are sure will get addressed if a sequel is made. A game we can truly recommend to anyone who just wants to spend his or her free time playing a simple yet fun game. We give Effing Worms a satisfying carnivorous meal for 86/100.