Pippa & Dips Review
+ Universal App
$0.99 Buy now!

Pippa & Dips Review

Our Review by Jordan Minor on March 25th, 2014
Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar :: ALONE IN THE DARK
Share This:

Pippa & Dips' shadowy visuals can't mask its rough gameplay.

Developer: Lucky Lurcher Games
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPad Air

Graphics / Sound Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar
Gameplay Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar
Playtime Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar
Replay Value Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar

Imagine a red-cloaked figure riding a bike with a tiny passenger in the front basket. Behind them is the moon so huge in the sky the shadowy forest landscape becomes even darker by comparison. Basically, imagine E.T. Now add sloppy bike controls and unfair deaths. That’s Pippa & Dips.

When an evil witch with little creativity starts kidnapping children, a young girl named Pippa and her dog Dips venture into the dark and dangerous woods on a rescue mission. The child protagonist, silhouetted visuals, and surprisingly gruesome deaths obviously recall Limbo. However, the physics-sensitive bike controls feel like someone dropped Trials into a 2D platformer, and the results are mixed. Riding a bike changes how players need to approach typical hazards, like moving platforms and oncoming enemies, in new and interesting ways.

However, the controls themselves are so slow and awkward that any cool ideas are quickly smothered by a barrage of countless frustrating deaths. Jumps are hard to coordinate, hitboxes are punishingly large, and successfully accelerating is almost impossible even with the unlockable upgraded bikes. Meanwhile the one offensive ability, a super-powered bark, takes so long to activate players need to whip it out well before any enemies show up onscreen. Careful, well-timed movements would then seem to be the answer, as evidenced by the fair amount of checkpoints. But the game also has an inexplicably strict time limit. Players can find bonus time, as well as other helpful items like a protective gorilla suit, but these conflicting design elements suck a lot of fun out of the experience. It’s too bad because with 14 lengthy levels, Pippa & Dips could have had a lot to offer.

Players that muscle through will find a few bright spots though. While the dark and moody art style is mostly composed of generic black boxes, and is definitely less polished than many other games with similar looks, it still creates an effective and grim storybook atmosphere. Standout background details included a deadly spinning wheel of skeleton arms holding swords and level exits made of hangman nooses. The spectacularly spooky, Danny Elfman-esque soundtrack also does its best to elevate the middling material.

But at the end of the day, Pippa & Dips just isn’t very fun. Something is very wrong when it feels better to just let the evil witch keep the kids.

[gallery size=”thumbnail”]

iPhone Screenshots

(click to enlarge)

Pippa & Dips screenshot 1 Pippa & Dips screenshot 2 Pippa & Dips screenshot 3 Pippa & Dips screenshot 4

iPad Screenshots

(click to enlarge)

Pippa & Dips screenshot 5 Pippa & Dips screenshot 6 Pippa & Dips screenshot 7 Pippa & Dips screenshot 8
Share This: