|Math Patrol: The Kleptoid Threat|
North American box art
|Genre(s)||Side-scrolling shooting, edutainment|
Math Patrol: The Kleptoid Threat is the first game in GXB Interactive's Learning Series. Its goal is to be an interactive mentoring tool by providing mathematic practice sessions according to USA 1st and 2nd grade national standards.
A GBA sequel called Math Patrol: The Venus Virus was planned but canceled.
It is the year 2762. Advanced technology led to space exploration, the colonization of the Earth's solar system, and prevalent alliances with alien races. Humanity has reconciled their differences and operate under a single government called the Union of Planets. Peace is commonplace in the Milky Way until the Kleptoid Empire, a race of aggressive mathematical aliens, is discovered.
Seeking to protect the denizens of the universe, the Union of Planets organizes an elite defense force named Math Patrol. These fighters solve a variety of math problems, the only known method of driving back the alien threat. The player starts as a recruit within the ranks and defends Earth's solar system from the invading Kleptoids.
The player names their protagonist and controls their own ship. They are given multiple missions to complete at each sector of the solar system, beginning at Pluto and ending at Earth. When missions within a sector are completed, players can proceed forward by pressing up on the map screen or return to the previous sector by going down. Additional missions may appear at every revisit.
Missions are divided into four major mini-games types:
- Side Fighter: Side-scrolling shooting segment. Enemy waves are themed to each math problem. Shoot the enemy ship labeled with the correct answer to receive points and complete stage. Certain stages will include a giant boss as the main target. Players will need to wait for the right answer to appear on it to damage it.
- Explorer: Top-down shooting screen filled with inanimate targets. Targets change their numerical label based on the math problem presented at the bottom of the screen. Players must move their ship around and shoot the correct answer. They may need to simultaneously shoot/avoid enemy ships during their search.
- Base Defense: Side-scrolling shooting segment. Players control a human shooter at the bottom of the screen. Enemy ships or meteorites bombard their base with each math problem. Aim for the moving target with the correct answer in order to cancel the assault. Life bar is judged by base's health over human unit.
- Quiz: Single math problem with four choices. Select an option to proceed with the quiz.
Difficulty is reliant on the player's progress. For instance, if a player answers every question correctly, their next mission may be on Pro difficulty. Getting half of the questions wrong or failing a mission may lower it to Hard or Normal. On Pro difficulty, enemy ships will be faster and may increase in numbers. Hard and Normal have slower ships and easier questions. Easy difficulty does not exist. Missions can be retried any time to alter difficulty levels or earn credits for buying ship parts.
Mathematical problems are randomized and based on personal player preferences, which are judged as the player completes missions. Seven levels are covered in mission content:
- Logic Patterns: Shapes, colors, letter patterns, number patterns
- Math Facts: Addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
- Place Values: Rounding up numbers, comparing, place values
- Money: Adding American coins (25¢ ~ $1)
- Time: Reading time from a traditional clock, adding/subtracting based on half hour, hour, or quarter hour
- Vocabulary: 2D basic shapes, odds and evens between 1~100, 3D shapes
- Fractions: Proper fractions, compare fractions, adding/subtracting fractions
Player progress is based on the number of stars earned from completed missions; stars are rewarded based on the percentage of correct answers for each mission. Three stars is the maximum reward 90% correct answers, one star being the least with less than 50%.
Once the player collects enough stars, they can take the Rank Test to promote their Math Patrol rank at the Math Control Command Posts (red and yellow shield icons on the map). These tests are multiple choice word problems. Perform well in the quiz to go up a rank. Higher ranks unlock better ships at the Math Control Command Post shop and additional missions in advanced sectors. The highest available rank is Admiral.
Certain sectors include a bonus test feature called Galactic Quiz, a multiple choice test with eighteen word problems. The goal is to finish the test without getting three questions wrong and earn extra credits.
Two questions are rigged as Bomb and Turbo. Bomb questions are timed and reward extra credits for a quick and correct answer; if the player exceeds the time limit or gets the question wrong, it will detonate and erase other possible questions. Turbo questions allow the player to bet credits for their reward; if they get it wrong, they will lose the number of credits. These tests can be quit and retried at any time.
If the player wishes to practice without affecting their main story progress, they can access the practice option at the main menu screen. Players can edit their preferred mini-game type, mathematical focus, and difficulty level in this mode.
Side Fighter and Explorer missions require the player to use their ship. Ships can only be altered by stopping at the shop within Math Control Command Posts. Ship parts are purchased with credits earned from missions and the Galactic Quiz.
Ships have four main parameters, three of which are represented as colored gauges during missions:
- Health (█): Durability of a ship. Loses mission if it diminishes completely.
- Fuel (█): Fuel for a ship. Automatic mission failure if empty.
- Shields (█): Protects ship from damage. Can proceed with stage if drained.
- Speed: Can only be altered by purchasing and changing models.
Before the player can sell or receive an item from the shop, they are presented an addition or subtraction question relevant to their current credit count. The player must be correct in order to perform their desired store transaction. Getting the question wrong negates the action; credits are not lost for incorrect answers. Players can only sell spare parts.
Projectile weapon. Use with A button.
|Lasers 1||$0.75||Fires one round at a time. Available to all ships|
|Rapid Fire Lasers||$1.25||Fires continuously. Clipper or above only.|
|Twin Lasers||$1.50||Fires two lasers continuously. Fighter or above only.|
|Torpedo||$2.00||Locks onto a nearby target. Fighter or above only.|
|Mega Torpedo||$4.00||Destroys target ship and all nearby ships. Cruiser only.|
Protection. Use with B button. Durability is indicated by number of hits listed for each shield.
|Shields 1||$1.00||Standard shields for all ships.|
Lasts 5 seconds.
|Shields 2||$1.25||For Clipper or up.|
Lasts 10 seconds.
|Shields 3||$1.50||For Clipper or up.|
Lasts 5 seconds.
|Shields 4||$4.00||For Fighter or up.|
Lasts 10 seconds.
|Life Shield||$6.00||Cruiser class. Restores lost health if destroyed by enemy attacks.|
Lasts 10 seconds.
|Clipper||$6.00||Ensign rank ship.|
|Fighter||$8.00||Captain rank ship.|
|Cruiser||$12.00||Admiral rank ship.|
Randomly dropped from defeated ships as green icons. Use with Select button. Can only be used per mission.
|All-Seeing Eye||Destroy all enemies on screen.|
|Dead Stop||Stops all enemies for 30 seconds.|
|Invincibility||Become immune to damage for 30 seconds.|
GXB Interactive ran a now defunct rewards program for users. Users could sign up to the company's official website and use their GXB user ID in the game. The user ID showed their GXB score which they could then implement onto the official website. The website could display a detailed report card and supplementary learning material for the user. Scholarships, achievements, and other goods were also available.