Everyday Spelunker Review

Everyday Spelunker Review

Jan 22, 2014

Everyday Spelunker is a straight up port of a Commodore 64 game of the same name released over 30 years ago, the same year I was born. Has it eroded over time?

Spelunker, as can be expected by the name is all about investigating complex caverns, grabbing as many valuables as possible and trying not to die. It is an old school platformer of the highest order where one
false move is rewarded only with death and precision jumping and cheap enemies are the norm.

Screenshot_2014-01-18-19-33-49The object of Spelunker is to reach the bottom of a large, confusing cavern filled with enemies and grab the treasure at the bottom, while grabbing other valuables along the way. Once you reach the bottom you must return to the top alive.

Everyday Spelunker is pretty much the same thing, except on Android.

To slightly compensate for the oppressive difficulty, Everyday Spelunker adds an option to cling to ropes that are climbed in game. If this option is selected, the player cannot submit their score to an online leaderboard, making it pretty unattractive. The game’s wallpaper can also be changed.

The most irritating thing about Everyday Spelunker is the ease of dying. The player dies if they touch pretty much anything, whenever it is succumbing from bat poo (literally) touching his leg or steam emitting from a vent. Falling half of the Spelunker’s height will also kill him.

Screenshot_2014-01-18-19-29-46The lack of physical controller support is a confusing omission in a game like this where pixel perfect precision is required. The touch controls simply aren’t precise enough to play the game with any skill. Bluetooth controller support would have really helped.

Everyday Spelunkerjust isn’t fun. The gameplay is so uninteresting that it’s difficult to see a reason to play it. It doesn’t have the retro charm of games that were actually good back in the days of this game, such as the classic PC/BBC Micro game Digger and Spelunker just was never a particularly good game to begin with.

The in app purchases really don’t help matters. The already high 2.99 price only allows access to the base game. There are a few sets of additional levels, but each of these cost another 0.99 each. The main thrust of ports is usually to enhance the original game with extra content, so the fact these are hidden behind a paywall is baffling.

Everyday Spelunker looks just like the original game. It’s easy enough to make out what things are, but an enhanced version like the free Spelunky would have been great. The sound is similarly identical to the original.

Everyday Spelunker is not a fun game. It is a poorly playing 30 year old game for a high price. There are much better retro inspired games on Android.