148Apps Network Post
Developer: Jeremy Brasch
Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.02.1
Device Reviewed On: iPhone

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★½☆☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★½☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

If your initial reaction to 8-Bit Jump is that it looks like a Mario rip-off, well, you’re right. But who says that’s a bad thing?

8-Bit Jump plays basically just like Mario – but with a few of its own surprises, of course. You control a construction worker who must collect coins to pay his rent. That’s what it says on the iTunes App Store, anyway. The game itself actually has no story. When you boot up the app, you’re greeted with a start screen. You can play around in the options, check out leaderboards or start the game. When you start the game, you’re thrown immediately into controlling the construction worker – no story or introduction to speak of.

This is a platformer, plain and simple. You control the construction worker by tilting your iPhone left and right. Tapping the screen causes him to jump. The controls take a little time to get used to, but they work well enough and actually give the game a unique feel that sets it apart from Nintendo’s iconic series.

The goal of the game is to get as far as possible, while collecting as many coins and points along the way as you can. Similarly to the original Super Mario Bros. on NES, when you die, it’s Game Over and you start over from the beginning. However, there are no “lives” in 8-Bit Jump, so when your character falls to his death, it’s seriously all over. The game does keep track of how many coins you collect, and there is a Game Center scoreboard, so you can compete with others.

So, it’s a Mario rip-off homage; I’ve established that. But is there anything else to criticize? Actually, not a whole lot. The lack of “lives” makes the game pretty darn hard. But perhaps that’s the point. One other small thing – there’s no background music. Just total silence while you play. While reading through reader reviews on the App Store, one user suggested adding a feature that would allow you to listen to your iPod library while playing. Kind of a cool suggestion and would provide some auditory entertainment while playing.

Is 8-Bit Jump an original title? Not even a little bit. But it’s fun and challenging. For a buck? Not bad. But you can download an ad-supported version on the App Store as well, which is probably the route I’d go. The 99 cent version needs more incentive than just a lack of ads, though, to get a full hearted recommendation from me.

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