Version Reviewed: 1.4
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 3GS
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Anyone who has spent much time playing iOS games or purusing the iOS games catalog in the App Store is well aquatinted with the running platformer genre of games that made popular by games like Canabalt or more recently, Jetpack Joyride. These are typically very simple games in which the player controls a character that automatically runs forward from one side of the screen to the other. They player then taps the screen to make the character jump (or move in some way) in order to avoid obstacles or jump over pits.
Run Dog Run works in essentially the same way. The player touches the screen to make the dog jump while it runs from left to right along a path of floating islands, the goal being to stay running as long as possible without falling off of the islands. The longer the player holds down their finger, the higher and longer the dog will jump. Players can also double jump, which comes in handy when a previous jump has been miscalculated. Flying in front of the dog on the left hand side of the screen is a bird. This bird will randomly drop eggs which the dog can pick up. These eggs will either speed up or slow down the dogs run, or decrease the amount of gravity which will cause the dog to jump much higher than normal. These pickups are necessarily beneficial to the player because they will often make it harder to execute successful jumps, but they do add some variance to the gameplay.
Run Dog Run is a very simple game, even for a running platformer. The dark, brooding, and almost creepy environments, while gorgeously designed, don't vary much. The game's visuals are the high point of the game, though. If the same amount of attention had been given to the gameplay the game may have turned out much better. The dog's jumps seem very inconsistent as do to the touch controls. This makes it very hard to land jumps successfully. The game looks great but unfortunately it doesn't play well enough to merit much praise.