As always, this edition of Games I Like features three random games that really don’t have much in common. What we do have is a great NES styled game where your character has a skull for a head and bounces on a pogo stick, an update to the classic Moon Patrol style of game play, and a game about bugs that’s good for the kids as well as the young at heart. All of these games receive a Recommended in my book, so here we go…
Skullpogo – For some reason I was expecting a Commander Keen clone (guess I should read descriptions once in a while), but instead this ends up being a really cool game where you just try and earn points by bouncing on the heads of various critters with a pogo stick. The various creatures include bats, zombies, pigs (both walking and flying) and chickens. Oh, and did I mention the main character has a skull for a head? The graphics have a great NES feel to them, while the music is decidedly SNES, complete with a wicked jazz tune that plays during the menu. The game sports three different visual themes that also seem to have slightly different game play elements, there are three different control schemes for different types of users, and some really nifty power ups that make head bopping even more interesting. Simple, addictive fun is what Skullpogo is all about.
Action Buggy – Once again we see that Donut Games can take a simple concept and make it addicting. In this case we’re looking at a modern version of Moon Patrol, but this strikes me as being much more fun than the original. Controlling the buggy is simple, the secondary small boost you get by pressing jump while you’re still in the air is both nifty and strategic, and for some reason I’m just amused by the fact that you can jump on top of trees and missiles (fire is always bad, though). The graphics are just what you’d expect from these folks, which means pixel perfect goodness. I also like the sound effects, especially when you’re jumping on trees. The music is nice and bouncy, which fits the mood quite well. Overall another nice action game from Donut Games.
Buggies – This one is more for the kids, but it’s still kind of amusing. You basically control a bug trying to gather up leaves so that you can escape through the magical door that appears on each level. Along the way you’ll need to avoid things like holes in the floor, electrified twirling poles, and bugs that don’t share your interest. You can use a virtual joystick or simply touching the screen to move, though surprisingly there’s no tilt option. There are three mini-games that can be unlocked which don’t help with the main game, but provide a nice diversion from the main task. The graphics are cute and the soundtrack is actually one of the better ones that I’ve heard for a casual game. There are a few little kinks that need to be worked out, but nothing that would impede you from enjoying the game. There are both paid and lite versions for the iPad as well, though oddly no lite version for the iPhone.
And there you have it – another edition of Games I Like all wrapped up. I already have two of my picks for the next edition, so look for it sooner rather than later (just don’t look for it too soon!)