Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
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Not long after the release of Scribblenauts Remix for iOS, 5th Cell is back with an all-new game: Run Roo Run. This game takes endless runner gameplay and distills it down into 420 single-screen micro-levels that only take a couple seconds to beat, each. It's not all just perpetual running and the occasional jump, as a variety of wrinkles get thrown into the experiences. Springs, oil slicks, barrels, fans, swinging tires, and other elements get added over time, and the levels begin to incorporate and combine these elements.
Thankfully, even as the game starts to add more elements, it remains simple to play - just tap once to jump or perform any other action. The game strikes a great balance between being easy enough for casual players to beat without feeling overly frustrated, with the 15 regular levels per world. Then, the 6 challenge levels take the game to the absolute limits, demanding microsecond-accurate perfection. As well, the game boasts an interesting extra content system - 10 new levels will be delivered to the game weekly, straight into the app, without updating. This should enusre the game's longevity, as it's perfectly good reason to come back to the game, especially as it only really takes a couple hours to beat the game's regular levels straight through.
The "gold star" mechanic in the game is just kind of silly. With a few exceptions, typically beating a level in one run-through is good enough to get a gold star. However, the timer doesn't reset on each restart, so essentially gold stars become a merit badge saying "I cared about gold stars enough to hit the restart button instead of just tapping to restart!" It just seems like an unncessarily implemented system. Still, I did start to get used to tapping the restart button, as I need the Game Center achievement points to catch up to the one person ahead of me on my friends list…I'm coming for you.
5th Cell have been known for their inventive ideas on handheld systems for a while now, and with this fun micro-platformer and great idea for adding extra content, their legacy continues. Fans of endless runners looking for something new and willing to experiment with a game with set levels will definitely want to check this out.