Developer: Ursa Major Media Inc.
Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.1
App Reviewed on: iPhone 4S

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★½☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

In Urp!, players take on the role of a little alien dinosaur whose home was just torn apart by an unstable planetary core, and his job is to put things back together. Urp can move, jump, and blast away obstacles to clear his path and ultimately place the missing elements back into their designated holes. Once all gaps have been filled, the planet’s core is stabilized and our cheerful protagonist can move on to the next level.

IMG_0336There is a time limit to completing each level, but the limits are generous enough to give children plenty of time to find their way through. In each level, players can move their character around a 360 degree world, which they can zoom in and out of for a better view. Along the way users are going to find collectable eggs, coins, and of course the detached elements they need to put back into place. Collect all 3 eggs from every planet and they will unlock a few extra bonus levels at the end. Coins can be used in the shop to change the Urp’s color, stripes, and dress him up in shoes, hats, and other accessories. Some might find the accessories cute, while others will likely think they look rather silly (kind of like dressing up one’s dog).

The responsive controls and smooth animations of Urp! will immerse young players into the world as they create an enjoyable, casual atmosphere. As far as more mature audiences are concerned, Urp! will come across as far less impressive. The level of difficulty will almost always feel less than challenging,  making the task of solving each puzzle seem linear and requiring very little thought. Such players might, in some cases, have to repeat a level after making a mistake but will rarely find difficulty in figuring out how to move forward.

IMG_0339Replay value is about average, but nothing to be impressed by. There are 6 worlds in total, each with a set of 10 levels and a seventh world that can be unlocked using eggs. It took me less than 30 minutes to complete each of the first worlds, so the story could be played through relatively fast.

In the end, the developers at Ursa Major Media have done enough to create a fun adventure game for children with Urp!, but did much less for players looking for an actual challenge.


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