Developer: Play Nimbus
Price: $1.99
Version: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★☆☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★½
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★½
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

What would happen if Lemmings were crossed with themes of evolution, with a little bit of The Incredible Machine sprinkled in just for good measure? Most likely the result would be Play Nimbus’ Wobbles. Sure the combination might sound a bit odd on paper, but rest assured that this is a match made in Neanderthal rump-torching heaven.

IMG_0449Mankind has been growing in intelligence and technology since the early days of cave-people. In the new puzzle/platformer, Wobbles, this progress takes the center stage while also providing a steadily increasing level of challenge. What starts out as being able to boost the on-screen avatars by toasting their tushes over an open flame grows to implement newer technologies like fountains to break their fall, tunnels to dig through walls, or oil slicks to quickly boost across the screen.

Each of the game’s six “Eras” consist of ten stages, complete with their own additional item that tests both intelligence and patience. After a basic tutorial, the remaining challenges begin to tie together all of the other items encountered up through that point in the journey. These tools must be combined to effectively lead the digital marching troops (that also cutely change appearance depending upon the era), on their quest to gather all three of the stars strewn about each environment.

IMG_0451Though the bar of complexity starts out rather low, it takes very little time before the trials begin to ratchet up. Experimentation and thinking outside of the box become crucial the more that items become readily available. In another nice touch, it takes an unusually low star count in order to unlock additional worlds. Instead of being forced to play through every stage, once a new world has been opened there is nothing holding the player back from leaving an existing era entirely, even if it remains unfinished.

Whether intentional or not, Wobbles has a way of mentally stimulating creative thinking while also stealthily teaching about the advancement of technology throughout human history. It certainly isn’t history book accurate, but the gameplay offers more than enough variety to justify a $1.99 price tag. Who knew that directing dense cavemen could be so much fun?

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