Version Reviewed: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
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In May of 2013, Flappy Bird meandered onto the App Store, exploded in popularity, and then bolted out the exit door like a cat with its tail on fire. Love or hate the game, Flappy Bird's short stay has ignited a revival of simple, one-finger arcade games.
Timberman Golden Edition by Digital Melody is one such example. This lumberjack simulator is anything but hearty: it aims to keep players entertained for seconds at a time, and not much else. That's perfectly okay, however. Easily-digested time wasters are what popularized the mobile platform to begin with, and for good reason.
Timberman players take up the axe of a plaid-wearing lumberjack that presumably works all night and sleeps all day. The lumberjack faces off against a huge tree that seems to stretch into infinity. With every tap on the screen, the woodsman whacks away another hunk of tree. As he works, branches descend from above. If he's caught under one of them, he's one dead Canuck.
The goal in Timberman is simply to survive for as long as possible by switching sides whenever necessary. If a branch begins to graze the lumberjack's head, he needs to zip over to the other side of the tree and keep going. So he goes, back and forth, building up the highest possible score until he messes up and gets beaned by a branch.
Timberman is also a race against time. There's a rapidly-depleting energy meter at the top of the screen that's filled up with every successful swing of the lumberjack's axe. If the meter empties, the game is over. In other words, players don't have the luxury of chopping slowly and carefully: They need to keep up a steady rhythm. Hey, the forest isn't going to slaughter itself. Get moving!
It's mostly about chasing a high score and then bragging about it on the game's leaderboards. There are also unlockable outfits and skins that don't add anything to the gameplay, but give players a goal to pursue.
Timberman Golden Edition offers goofy, fast-paced fun, even if it's on the shallow side. It's ideal for long lines at the bank, or for folks harboring a major vendetta against trees.