The App: Tentacles
The Device: iPad
The Price: $1.99 on iPad, 99 cents on the iPhone
The Basics: The basic concept of the game is this — you play as a little creature who gets trapped inside the body of an evil doctor. The game finds you journeying across his body (the heart, the brain, etc) trying to escape, using your tentacles to propel you through the course. Of course, there are obstacles along the way: chainsaw-like environments, deadly organisms and so forth. There are usually three categories of rewards per level, so while you can complete a level and move on, you can always return and try to do it perfectly (Angry Birds style!). Like so many mobile games, going back and trying to better your score is incredibly addicting.
The Review: I’ve completed the game, but I keep coming back.
It’s hard to describe the gameplay as it rests on the halfway point between platformer and point-and-click. Like a platformer, the game is all about timing and safely navigating your environment, but you do so by tapping on your destination and grabbing onto it with your tentacle. Unlike too many mobile platformers, Tentacles down’t make the mistake of mapping jump and move buttons to the screen. This streamlining makes the game so incredibly easy to play!
Graphically, the game looks incredible. On the large screen of the iPad, it simply looks stunning. It plays really smoothly and the UX is flawless. Playing it is a joy. Although the game does guide you through a rudimentary story, anyone looking for a complicated tale should look elsewhere. The storytelling is about as basic as it comes. But that doesn’t really matter when the game is this much fun.
Tentacles does three things that I find attractive in mobile gaming. First, it’s incredibly addicting. Secondly, it’s incredibly easy to learn. Thirdly, each level can be played in a minute or two, making it a perfect time-filler game. There’s no heavy investment required: you just pick it up and play at any moment.
The Grade: A+