I don't know what it is about birds, but our feathered friends seem to enjoy major success on the App Store. Cue Air Penguin: the latest 59p craze that's eating up the rankings and best seller lists.
Conventional wisdom dictates that the aerial penguin ought to be hurled aloft by a giant catapult and aimed at rickety structures, but thankfully, GAMEVIL have crafted a charming, innovative, slick and adorable platformer that uses the iPhone's tilt controls to devastating advantage.
Air Penguin tells the story of a heroic flightless bird who has to save his kids from ice floes after global warming devastated their Antarctic habitat. To guide him on his quest, players need to tilt their iPhone to control his movements as he bounds from platform to platform; dodging between killer sharks and yawning chasms, skiing across plateaus and riding on the back of friendly turtles.
Air Penguin's action takes place from a top-down perspective rather than the traditional profile view, meaning that players can accurately gauge where their cute companion will land. The tilt functionality is perfectly implemented, allowing for precise, tight movements and pleasing degree of air control while making a jump.
One hundred stages provide an obscene amount of value, and the levels are well-paced with a wide variety of obstacles and challenges to circumvent. Air Penguin's art style is also top notch, delivering cutesy visuals that don't compromise on functionality. A challenge mode, scoreboards, Game Centre achievements and unlockable one-use items round out a thoroughly worthwhile package that's a standout bargain at 59p.
- Enjoyable, tight action with a huge number of levels
- Best tilt controls in class
- Crisp and cute visuals
- Seriously, I couldn't find anything wrong with it
Summary: Air Penguin is an essential purchase that will delight hardcore platforming fans and casual time-wasters alike. Thoroughly deserves to become a phenomenon.
Compatibility: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.
Price: £0.59 - App Store