Skip to content

Worms W.M.D: Mobilize – classic Worms action, reloaded

Developer: Team17
Price: $5/£5
Size: 2.1 GB
Version: 1.2
Platform: iPhone & iPad

Worms W.M.D.

Worms W.M.D: Mobilize is a mobile conversion of a 2016 console and PC game, but we don’t need to get into the weeds here. It’s a Worms game. You know the drill.

Just in case you don’t, the Worms series has been plowing its unique furrow for approaching 30 years now, during which the essentials have largely remained the same. Opposing gangs of anthropomorphic invertebrates wage war across ultra-deformable 2D battlefields, taking it in turns to launch explosive artillery (and other, wackier weapons) at one another.

Buildings and vehicles add a new dimension

Worms W.M.D: Mobilize takes that core premise, gives the worms a slightly more modern look, and introduces some fresh elements like vehicles, mounted weapons, and protective buildings.

Each member of each team gets a minute or so to reposition, select a weapon, aim, and fire said weapon at an opponent. Thanks to the deformable nature of the levels, exaggerated physics, and battleground obstacles, battles are rarely predictable.

Destruction and chaos are always close

You might fall short of your target with a bazooka shot, but send a mine flying into a completely different target, who in turn sets off an explosive barrel that launches another wriggly adversary into a watery grave.

At heart, this is the same game of positioning, prioritization, weapon selection, and careful aiming as Worms 4 was when we reviewed it way back in 2015. This is a much better game, though.

The art style has been modernised

There are no invidious loot boxes, for one thing. This is a premium game through and through, with the full game accessible from the off.

That includes a full set of 20 single-player missions in the Campaign mode. You also get both online and pass-the-handset multiplayer, the latter of which wasn’t present in that earlier Worms title.

Pop culture references abound

We weren’t actually able to find an online game when we checked, which is often the problem with games that aren’t massively popular. That doesn’t really matter, however, as Worms has always been better when played face-to-face with your opponent.

The main criticisms we have of Worms W.M.D: Mobilize have endured through all of the mobile versions. It’s not a particularly well-optimized mobile port. The zoomed-out view makes it difficult to make out fine detail on smaller devices, while zooming in restricts your view of the battlefield. The pinch-to-zoom controls seem rather unresponsive, too.

Zooming in is necessary, if fiddly

Indeed, the other persistent criticism with mobile Worms games that also applies here is the controls. These invertebrates are fiddly to control even with a joypad, largely by design. With virtual controls, it can be downright painful.

If you can stick at it, though, Worms W.M.D: Mobilize is the best mobile version yet. Its lively, unpredictable turn-based scraps are relentlessly entertaining, whether flying solo or passing an iPhone among a small group of friends.