Developer: Brutal Bit
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
Anyone who didn't enjoy testing their memory with the classic children's toy Simon Says clearly didn't have a childhood. That said, trying to stretch its relatively simple concept into four unique game types seems like a difficult task. Luckily, Speedathon pulls it off as well as one can hope.
Technically, Speedathon is four games is in one. No matter what though, it all boils down to the player having to properly press four different colored buttons. Speed mode tasks players with pressing lit buttons as fast as possible. Sequence mode presents a scrolling onscreen pattern that must be followed. Reaction mode tests the players reflex and memory mode challenges players with remembering increasingly longer button sequences. These modes are all tense yet fun in that escalating, Simon Says way and they feel decently varied. However, in the end, the game is nothing but pushing the four buttons and there are only so many ways to make that feel different. Fortunately, the touch controls are snappy and responsive and the speed-heavy gameplay makes good use of multi-touch.
For such a simple game though, at least the presentation has some effort behind it. While the buttons and the sort of steampunk machine they appear to be apart of are nothing but pieces of static artwork, it's sharp, appealing art. Also, the game uses animal metaphors to score the players. For example, slow players get ranked as snails while fast ones get ranked as cheetahs. It's a nice touch and scores can be compared online along with achievements. The soothing, techno, ambient music may be hard to notice at first, especially without headphones, but that's why it works. This is a game where one cannot afford to be distracted.
Games like Speedathon justify the existence of the $0.99 price point. It's not bad but if it were any more expensive there would be no reason to even consider it. At this price, though, one can comfortably and cheaply appreciate its pure simplicity.