Scoops Review

Scoops Review

Nov 27, 2013

Scoops is a fun game from NimbleBit in the same vein as Sky Burger.

This isn’t one of those newfangled hi-def games with plenty of elements and overly involved backstory; no, the charm of this one is that there’s little need for a tutorial or trial runs. The gameplay starts with an ice cream cone at the bottom of the playing area. Said cone can be controlled by tilting the device to the left or right. From the top are food items — mostly globs of perfectly sculpted ice cream — and these fall down vertically from different points at the “top.” The goal of the game is to guide the ice cream cone underneath the falling scoops so as to gather as many scoops as possible, to build the tallest ice cream structure possible.

Moving the cone successfully is not as simple, as some of the laws of physics are adhered to. As the cone gets taller, it just “feels” harder to handle, with the cone visibly swaying, and the top of the stack struggles to follow the cone that has been moved over. The cone never tips over, but it gets to a point where only the quickest of movements will ensure that the stack gets there in time, especially since reaction time is cut down by the shorter distance created scoops4by the rising stack. Getting the scoops earns points; getting the same color in succession boosts those points and some scoops have special attributes.

There are enemies in this game, and they are the same enemies of ice cream lovers the world over: vegetables. Different type of vegetables drop without warning from the top. Sometimes, it’s actually hard to avoid picking them up. Collecting too many ends the run.

The game graphics are simple, and do what they need to do with little fanfare. A little bit more sophistication in the gameplay might suit older players, and I think it could have more pop visually.

It’s not a game that taxes the mind too much, and that can be good and bad depending on the person. It’s a great time waster though, and probably not something to embark upon while undergoing cravings for cold confectioneries.

Happy Vikings Review

Happy Vikings Review

Jun 13, 2011

If history tells us anything about the Vikings, it’s that the Scandinavian terrors were far from happy with their lot. Bored with ice, snow and inventing death metal, they set about plundering, pillaging, persecuting – and doubtless countless other unpleasant activities starting with P – their European neighbours. Of course, games hold historical accuracy in the same contempt that the Vikings held non-Viking human life, so Happy Vikings can be forgiven for seeming a little revisionist.

The game, as the title suggests, paints the Vikings as happy-go-lucky scamps, with huge ginger beards and big smiling faces. Sure, they’re out robbing, but look how cute they are, you can’t blame them for being a little boisterous. That boisterousness takes the form of a loot stacking puzzle game, which makes perfect sense if you don’t try and think about it.

You play a lone Viking, running around the bottom of a long boat as your comrades in beards catapult the spoils of war in your general direction. It’s your job to stack the herring, jewels, lumps of meat, treasure chests and barrels of mead into matching piles of three or more. This turns them into coins, which steadily fill up the boat.

Happy Vikings plays like a mix between Tetris and a classic 2D platformer. You jump around, collecting loot as it falls, whilst trying to figure out the best arrangement for all the tumbling goodies. The more loot you burst in a single go, the more points you receive. So, whilst you can finish each level by only chaining in threes, if you’re after the big score and the adoration of your Viking friends, then you have to think on your feet and plan ahead.

For some people, Happy Vikings’ constant cheeriness might be a bit off putting, others still may find the slightly clumsy control system too unwieldy. These are minor flaws, however, in what is a well put together and immensely enjoyable game.

Perhaps the most enjoyable aspect of Happy Vikings is the way it does something different. It may not be hugely original, but it’s far from a straight forward clone, unlike a lot of the titles that you’ll find on the Android Market. It’s fun, addictive and, best of all, won’t come to your village in the dead of night and slaughter all of your loved ones.