Developer: Tokyo Traffic Jam
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.1
App Reviewed on: iPad mini Retina

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

To The End is a minimalist casual game featuring an animated red cog as it makes its way through a variety of themed environments, guided by only the touch of one finger and impeccable timing.

Players must hold their finger down on the screen for as long as they wish to continue traveling forward through the level. There’s no backwards movement (unless the environment allows it), so when aspects of the stage are either responding to the cog or constantly moving, failure is often inevitable until the player comes to grips with the course.

20140726-010711-4031228.jpgIf that wasn’t challenging enough, there are no checkpoints and only 3 lives with which to complete all 13 levels – meaning To The End certainly lives up to its name. This survival technique ups the ante and suspense for each level, but it makes losing even worse by having to go back and breeze through previously completed levels with ease before potentially failing in the same place as last time. Some people will enjoy this feature, others won’t, but what’s undeniable is that it will hook most until the bitter end. Its a defining feature that will either be a drawback or an enticing challenge.

20140726-010712-4032095.jpgThe increasingly imaginative courses are comprised of delightfully blocky, colorful levels floating in a sea of nothingness, set against a simple but enchanting piano score. Each level has a unique theme – from the desert, to space, to a port by the sea – and each has its own quirks, whether its a shuttle launch or a boat trip across the water. It means that although brief, each level is memorable and completely different from the others. Although it would decrease the difficulty significantly, and maybe that’s against the point, a backwards command option would certainly help out a lot.

To The End is a captivating game. While admittedly requiring perfect timing and an iron will, the 13 levels present a tough and memorable challenge that is fiendishly addictive while it lasts.


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