Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5
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Ever play Ecco the Dolphin in the 1990s? If so, Reef Run should feel quite familiar. The game allows players to control a shark as they attempt to navigate through a series of levels, defeating evil Octopuses and saving their beautiful reef. Oh, and along the way, eating lots of poor little fish. It's fun, oddly soothing and ideal for diving into for five minute doses.
Controls are simple, using a series of taps to encourage the shark to navigate the various rocky surfaces beneath the sea. Like in any decent platformer, the shark can collect fish which in turn keep him safe. Run out of fish and hit an obstacle and it's game over. Fortunately, there are plenty of fish around and the many tunnels are quite wide and simple to negotiate. At the end of each level, a letter is collected with a boss battle emerging once all the letters are found. These battles open up new offensive power-ups, such as a bumper or laser, enabling the shark to fight back a little more effectively than simply swimming a lot.
Once a level has been completed, a Reef Run mode opens up, allowing players to enjoy an Endless Swimming experience for points and fun. This mode isn't quite as compelling as the level based structure elsewhere, but it is a nice addition for a game that's already good value for money.
The luscious if simple landscapes keep things oddly calming. Reef Run is a simple game but it appreciates that there are advantages to be gained from such ease of play. It's an ideal game to drop in on for brief periods as each level doesn't take long to complete. Sticking to tap based controls rather than tilt ensure it works well on the daily commute. It might not revolutionize but it'll certainly entertain.