Version Reviewed: 1.7.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
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The first mobile game that ever truly grabbed me was Halfbrick's Jetpack Joyride. Although the endless runner has been done to death, there are just enough things about that game that would draw me back in for "one more run." Radical Rappelling is their latest spin on the genre, and I'm finding myself similarly grabbed by it. With a high level of polish, tons of unlockables, and a unique approach, Radical Rappelling is definitely my new go-to quick game on my phone.
When players first boot up Radical Rappelling, they will likely notice two big features that aren't usually present in runners. First, it's played in portrait mode characters are rappelling down a cliff side. Second, the characters don't move automatically but instead jump on their own while players must tap the screen to start sliding down. These differences are pretty fundamental mix-ups to the standard runner and make Radical Rappelling feel fresh from the get go.
On the way down the cliffside players need to look out for stuff like a lava flow descending from above and purple, urchin-like obstacles. In addition to things that should be avoided, each stage is littered with coin bags, stunt objects, and interesting rock features to keep the base platforming [Editor's Note: You mean... "base jumping?" *rimshot*] interesting and... well... radical. On top of this players can also expect extra objectives, unlockables, and all of the other compelling bits and systems that have been mainstays in Halfbrick's designs for a while now.
Despite being procedurally-generated, Radical Rappelling manages to do a good job of creating scenarios that feel intentionally designed. This sets up scenarios where it's possible to link together multiple stunts to help build up a Remix Meter, which gives players invulnerability while psychadelic colors emerge and dubstep begins to play. Even though the dubstep seems like a bit much, stringing together stunts to trigger Remix feels very satisfying each time.
Radical Rappelling is the most exciting runner I've played in a long time, and it's for good reason. It's well made and operates on the existing tropes that initially made the genre compelling while at the same time - quite literally - flipping other concepts completely on their side. Radical Rappelling is quite simply another fantastic game from Halfbrick that is definitely worth your time.