This whole corporate name game thing confuses me, but whether you know them as Crawl Space Games or Elevate Entertainment, one thing is clear: these guys know their way around a causal game. If you don’t believe me all you need to do is check out Crocodile Crossing, their latest offering for iOS devices. The game looks like it’s for kids and the controls are deceptively simple, yet playing it through once or twice on the third level will make you realize that this isn’t just for the young ones. Besides, the pigs are cute and it is fun watching them bounce around seemingly oblivious to the crocodile below.
The premise is simple – the poor little piggies just want to get from one side of the swamp to the other without becoming croc food, and it’s your job to get them there. To do this you control a trampoline at the bottom of the screen by sliding it back and forth with your finger. A pig must be safely nestled on the dock at the right side of the screen in order to be counted. You have to keep an eye on this, because it’s not uncommon for a pig to just miss a jump at the end of its journey and end up plummeting to an implied doom. Of course this can also get you into trouble (or at least it does me) because at the last moment I’ll whip over to rescue said pig and lose one coming from the other side of the swamp.
The first level is pretty easy, with a decent sized island floating between the two docks that can give wayward pigs and your poor trampoline a bit of a reprieve. In the second level the island is moving back and forth, and I believe it’s a bit smaller. Finally, level 3 gets rid of the island and zooms out a bit, giving you a wider gap to contend with. I hope they roll out more levels, because I’m eager to see what will be coming next. Every level sports the hungry crocodile, though he’s really just there for intimidation since you never see him eat any pigs.
As you’re playing wings, a clock and a trampoline will occasionally fall from the sky. The wings will remain with you and save one pig from plummeting to their demise. The trampoline temporarily makes your trampoline bigger, and the clock slows down all the action for a bit. The power ups are pretty easy to retrieve (you simply tap on them), the down side being there is no multi-touch, so you have to let go of the trampoline for a moment. Unfortunately, in this game a moment can make all the difference.
All together there are 3 levels and 5 or 6 different pigs, most of which need to be unlocked by playing the game and some of which aren’t even available to be unlocked unless you make an IAP for the full version. The game does have a leaderboard for each level via OpenFeint, but sadly there are no achievements at this point. Hopefully that will come some day. In the mean time you can feel some sense of accomplishment by rescuing enough pigs to unlock each new level and pig type.
The visuals are cute. Each pig has their own look about them, though they do all share a certain sports ball like roundness. The crocodile pops up every once in a while with a big smile across its mouth, licking its lips. The only disappointment is that there is no animation in the background. The sound effects are done well enough, with each pig having a unique grunt. There is actually a different soundtrack for each level which is nice, and the first level even has some nifty ambient noise.
Crocodile Crossing is another fine casual game from the folks over at Crawl Space Games. It has the perfect appeal for kids, yet it’s still fun enough for adults to enjoy, even if you don’t have any rugrats. You can pick up the game for free, but I would definitely encourage you to get the IAP pack, because that has the best levels and pigs in it. This is one group of pigs that deserve all the help you can give them.