Developer: Mobigame
Price: $4.99
Version Reviewed: 1.1

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★★
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★★
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★★☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

Since EDGE debuted in the App Store, it’s collected a number of awards and rave reviews. While most gamers were thrilled with the title, many also begged for more levels. Twenty-six levels just wasn’t enough to sate some appetites, and I can see why: it only took me a few days to finish them.

Mobigame has heeded the pleas of their fans. The extra seventeen levels in the recent update add some more challenge to an already amazing game, and the added music and global rankings are pretty nice, too. If you were on the fence about EDGE due to its length, this update ought to persuade you.

EDGE is a platformer with retro flair. The instructions are deceptively straightforward: roll your cube around the level, collect the prisms (optional), and try to get to the finish point in as little time as possible. The emphasis throughout the game is on simplicity, from the isometric graphics to the lack of power-ups or other special features. EDGE focuses on movement, and the focus pays off.

The controls are absolutely fluid. You have a choice of three options: tilting the phone, pressing the screen (the default), or using a set of on-screen arrows. In the default option, pressing the screen causes the block to roll in that direction, and it’s precise and intuitive. Tilting works fine, but it’s not really practical. I was honestly surprised by how easy it is to control the cube in EDGE using the default controls. Besides the typical rolling across flat surfaces, your cube can also climb walls, as long as they’re only as high as the cube itself. You can also balance the edge of your cube on the edge of another surface, which is one of the trickier feats. You can switch control schemes easily in-game, and I usually chose the on-screen arrows for when I needed to balance on an edge. Sadly, thanks to the precise controls, you won’t be able to blame EDGE for your own failings!

And fail you will. EDGE is hard—timing everything just right can be a challenge. Dieing, oddly enough, isn’t such a problem; you’re instantly returned to one of the (unmarked) checkpoints that you’ve passed in the level. This forgiving aspect is a great boon, though seeing the tally of your deaths at the end of a level leaves you with incentive to improve.

What I loved most about EDGE is the sheer life packed into its levels. These things move with a life that you wouldn’t expect from dull cubes. Sliding blocks, falling platforms, walls that catapult you forward, switches that have to be pressed…be prepared to time your movements to the environment. The levels are like massive playgrounds, albeit ones where failing to leap onto a swingset could result in your demise. Thanks to the simple controls, the levels can spiral to seemingly endless degrees of complexity; flying platforms may ferry you across a level, or they might ram you into a pit.

The game is stylishly presented, using minimalistic, isometric blocks for all of its elements, and a fitting chiptunes soundtrack. I personally loved the graphics, though some might find that the dull white gets old after a while. I don’t really have any criticisms, either; for what it is, EDGE is impeccably crafted. If you don’t like it, it’s probably just not your style of game. Those looking for quick bursts of play should search elsewhere, but this instantly hooked me. A level editor would be fantastic, but I have to admit that that particular wish is a bit unlikely. Hey, a girl can dream, right?

EDGE is a challenging platformer, but a forgiving one, with easy-to-leap-into gameplay and a simplicity that highlights the game itself over fancy graphics. While this one might not be for casual gamers, it’s a game with real depth and enough levels to keep anyone hooked for hours. This one of the few games that’s definitely worth $5, and I can’t wait to see what Mobigames produces next.

Posted in: Games, iPhone Apps and Games, Reviews

Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , ,