App Reviewed on: iPhone 3GS
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Okay, so an egg that lives in a cave is depressed because it doesn’t have enough wealth to fill said cave completely. Never mind that the egg probably wouldn’t be spending any of this fortune or that it inexplicably wants to horde it all like a dragon in a classic fantasy tale, it’s just how things are. What I want to know is how acquiring all this wealth equates to a simple, yet rather addicting, jumping game.
That egg wants its treasure and it wants it bad, but the only way to acquire any is to leap from precarious platform to precarious platform in an endless ascension to nowhere, snagging as many goodies along the way as possible until that inevitable missed jump. Tapping and dragging anywhere on the screen will produce a reticule that indicates the current targeted area as well as the trajectory, and releasing will cause the egg to make its move. Thanks to quite a few moving platforms of varying speeds it’s not a simple matter of point and shoot, however. Quite often aim will need to be adjusted in order to compensate for force and angle. And just to make things interesting there’s the added element of speed: take too long between jumps and the multiplier goes away, resulting in less accrued wealth and possibly an embarrassing score.
There’s just something about the leaping and emphasis on moving quickly that makes Greedy Jump difficult to put down once it’s started. There’s plenty of self-directed pressure to do better and better, as well as a number of upgrades and customization items that can be unlocked in the store using any gems earned through play. Some of the power-ups are pretty cool, too, such as the hand that will automatically grab the edge of a just missed platform and flip the egg on top of it.
It’s great to see an addictive free-to-play game like Greedy Jump hit the App Store, but the problem with free-to-play is that it can be difficult to balance and that’s no different here. The use of gems to buy new stuff, the ability to buy more gems with real money, and the way gems are rationed out through regular play all make sense and are typical practices but the balance feels off. Specifically a number of the items in the store are disproportionately expensive when compared to the rate gems are typically earned. In other words it’s either shell out some cash or play a lot in order to get new stuff.
Being fun and addictive certainly doesn’t hurt Greedy Jump’s chances at success, but it’s still a shame to see so much extra content sitting there just out of reach. I mean it’s technically still within reach, but it requires a ton of grinding. Which I suppose isn’t all bad, considering.