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Developer: BrainBlast Games LLC

Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4S

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

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Insanity is a scary prospect for anyone. The feeling of losing one’s mind has to be one of the most terrifying things imaginable, and being tied down and locked up in an asylum certainly wouldn’t make it any more pleasant. Thankfully, most people won’t ever have to experience any of that. Still, Curio attempts to bring such a feeling to players via the safety of their iOS device. Unique graphics, simple gameplay coupled with a chilling setting, and tons of compelling bonus content make this game something rarely seen in the iOS app store.

Curio as a game is super simple. The player plays as Ron, a patient escaping from a very run down insane asylum. Ron runs quickly from left to right and the player taps the screen to make Ron jump. By jumping at the right time, the player can help Ron avoid obstacles and grab his pills. The pills keep Ron sane and prevent him from falling deep into crazy hallucinations. The obstacles that Ron must avoid consist of other asylum patients, all are psychotic and some are downright suicidal. By jumping over these crazies, Ron makes his way towards the exit and freedom.

Failing to avoid the other inmates or stay stocked on pills will cause Ron to succumb to insanity. Insanity is basically the end of the game, but includes a psychedelic little 8-bit mini-game that resembles the running and jumping gameplay of the game at large. Once each level has been finished, the player unlocks interesting bonus content. They can unlock and view Ron’s personal works of art as well as a fully narrated audio story that delves into Ron’s decent into madness. This kind of substantial content gives players an added incentive to play again and again and unlock more. In fact, this bonus content is very well done and is definitely the game’s strongest point.

The gameplay in Curio is not very unique at all, in and of itself. However, Curio’s haunting atmosphere and it’s superb extras make it more of an experience than just a simple game. Ultimately, this is a title well worth considering.

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