Version Reviewed: 1.01
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
With obvious influences gleaned from Sonic the Hedgehog, SpeedyPups is a quite charming and fast-paced runner/platformer. It suffers from some strange difficulty spikes, with one mode proving to be too easy and the other too awkward, but it’s reasonably entertaining.
You play a cute puppy as he attempts to save his fellow puppy friends from some evil robots. This is a tenuous storyline that’s rarely used in great detail. All you need to know is that you’ll be running a lot. The controls are easy enough: you run automatically, with taps to jump and double-jump, as well as the option of a spin attack by swiping to the side or holding down to slow down a jump. In the Free Run mode, you run through various worlds attempting to survive for as long as possible, while in the Challenge mode you have set objectives to complete.
The former has the strange issue of taking too long. Auto-runners are generally designed for quick sessions and SpeedyPups eventually outstays its welcome - at least where Free Run is concerned. It’s pretty easy to rake up plenty of free lives, which means a session can last 15-20 minutes with little trouble. It’s fun for a time but it takes too long to throw in more significant obstacles such as robots to really grab your interest.
Challenge Mode goes the other way by being decidedly tricky. Pinpoint accurate jumps are vital to your success and I found myself briefly flummoxed by the second challenge stage where retrieving a treat required a jump across some spikes that required precise taps. It is the more satisfying of the two modes though, not least because it unlocks coins that can be used to purchase upgrades and new pups with their own special advantages.
With a difficulty tweak here or there, SpeedyPups could be a bit more appealing. As it stands, it’s a little too long on one mode and a little too awkward on the other. That upgrade system is quite tantalizing though, and it captures the Sonic-esque feel to platforming reasonably well. SpeedyPups is so very nearly something special, but not quite.