Reviewed on pc


Reviewed By: John Wade, IV

Computer Platform: PC
Produced by: Softnyx
Price Range: Free
Learning curve time: 1-30 min.
Age level: Children (Older)
ESRB Rating: Unrated
Patches / Upgrades: Frequently, but the game auto-updates
System Requirements: CPU : Pentium 300A, Memory : 64M , Video Card : i740(with 3D accelerator support), Video Memory : over 8M+ , DirectX8.0 support required, O/S : Windows 98/2000/ME/XP, Internet Explorer 4.0 or greater

Overall Rating:
Genre: Strategy
Christian Rating: 4 of 5
   (slightly offensive)
Gameplay: 5 of 5
Violence: 4 of 5
   (barely present)
Adult Content: 5 of 5

Gunbound.  Illustration copyrighted.
Gunbound is a fun and relatively fast-paced strategic shooter from Korean developer Softnyx. Anyone familiar with the Worms series of turn-based games should be able to fit right in, but reading the tutorial on the website is highly recommended while downloading the game. What really makes this different from Worms (and Scorched Earth before it) though are the inclusion of Mobiles and Avatars. An avatar is the graphical representation of your in-game character, and can be customized in a number of ways by purchasing items (either with real money or with gold earned by playing the game) in the Avatar shop. If they wish, players may also give other players avatar items as a gift (Softnyx has stated that they have plans to add a sell/trade feature soon). A mobile is a creature (or sometimes a small machine) that the avatar rides on, and it is equipped with three different weapons that vary according to the type of mobile. Each mobile also has special attributes unique to it, such as Dragon's ability to hover off the ground or the Nakmachine's (as well as Aduka's) ability to fire when facing the opposite direction. This is basically a small portion of what you need to know about the game, and thankfully it is all covered in the game's online manual.

Christian Rating: 4

This is a pretty family friendly game, and the entire family can have fun with it (especially goofing off in the avatar shop). However while there are a lot of costumes that are entirely acceptable (including an awesome-looking Arch Angel costume) there are a few things that need to be laid out on the table:

  • There is a Red Devil costume (to pay homage to a British Soccer team) complete with a pointed red tail. No horns though, just a red bandana.
  • There is also a Devil armor costume tagged "use the power of devil!" There is a matching set of horns that can also be bought.
  • Magician costumes can be bought, such as different styles of hair, robes, etc.
  • There is a flag of a small black bat with a pointed tail named "Black Devil"
  • Also, there is one Mobile called Mage whose weapon is a wand, and fires an SS (Special Shot) that resembles an arcane rune when it hits.

And those five things are the only thing wrong with the game. If one can get past that they should have no problems with the content of the game.

Gameplay: 5

Absolutely flawless for a turn-based shooter… provided you can find a good room where everyone has broadband access.

Gunbound Poster

While it was mentioned earlier that a lot of the strategy comes from your choices of Mobiles and Avatars, even more strategy lies in reading the terrain itself. Before making a shot the distance must be gauged, shot strengths must be set, and any other factors must be accounted for (height, wind, and especially any tornados in the way). Also the player may use different items (depending on the server) such as healing items, teleportation items, and items that enable a player to fire twice in a round. However using these items also means that the wait for the next turn will be longer opponent may get another turn before the player does. There is also the concept of MoonDisk phases, but it's so difficult to explain that it won't be attempted. The basic gist is that different MoonDisk phases affect different mobile's shots. It's small additions like these that make Gunbound much more recommended than the Worms series.

Violence: 4

Practically nonexistent, but since the entire point is to shoot the other guy until their mobile breaks down this reviewer had to give the violence rating a 4. There is no blood, no gore, just the cartoony and mindless blasting of your opponent (and the occasional falling hammer or stick of dynamite). It also needs to be stated that no avatars ever get hurt. When an avatar's mobile is out of commission, they simple take off on a small robot and if the server allows it can play a small slot machine game to earn gold or the chance to drop an item on your opponent.

Adult Content: 5

This is the worst part of the game, however it's not a fault of the game itself so points could not be detracted from it. Gunbound is online-only game (and as of press time, a free online game) and there are a lot of immature and foul- mouthed people that play it. Despite the fact that Softnyx constantly monitors all chats and has a (rather excellent) swear filter installed people still find ways to get around it. Abbreviated forms of swearing are very popular, and the only thing you can really do is leave the room and find another one. Malicious hackers also run rampant in the game and constantly find ways to cheat (and here's a tip: never ever EVER under any circumstances give out passwords out be it frontwards, backwards, or in Greek. Also, don't trade any items under any circumstances. Until Softnyx says so you can not trade items and they'll probably run off with the items). This is the biggest problem with the game, but it does need to be stated that Softnyx does an exce llent job with banning repeat offenders or people with offensive names. The saddest part is that most of these offenses come from the American and Canadian communities. This reviewer has played Gunbound with many people from all over the world, including people from Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Korea, and Brazil and have had no problems with them, yet it is a widely held opinion in the Gunbound community that North American players are not exactly known for their sportsmanship (do note that the writer of this review is an American, and is deeply saddened by this).


Overall Rating: 4.5

Gunbound is a very well designed game. It is also well maintained and updates frequently with new content (maps, avatar wears, and the occasional mobile). Every once in a while a game comes along that seems completely family friendly, yet has some small problems that parents need to know about beforehand. Gunbound is unfortunately one of those games, but its main problems are not from the game itself but rather the community. But as was stated earlier, if anyone can get past some wierd and occultic avatar wears and can find a server with clean language this is one of the best games available for the PC.

Year of Release—2003

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Christian Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Films for Christ or the Christian Answers Network.

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