I haven’t seen Despicable Me the movie, admittedly, though it’s not exactly a prerequisite for playing Minion Rush the game, which is nice.
That’s because Despicable Me: Minion Rush is a – wait for it – endless runner. You’d be forgiven for sighing (heck, it was only a couple of days ago that I reviewed Running With Friends), though it’s actually really good.
Indeed, Despicable Me: Minion Rush is quite possibly the best-looking endless runner we’ve seen to date.
Gameplay wise, all the familiar endless runner mechanics are here, so you’re swiping to jump, slide and change lane, and there’s currency (bananas, for some reason) scattered around the playing area.
With said currency, Despicable Me: Minion Rush invites you to invest in – yes – power-ups, with the desired effect being increased/enhanced as you pump money into it.
For example, there’s the obligatory magnet (called a “Banana Vacuum” here), the Minion Launcher, which gives you a head start, and the Banana Splitter, which doubles the value of each banana.
There’s also a couple of completely over the top power-ups, namely the Fluffy Unicorn, which launches a vertical scrolling mini-game when collected, and the Mega Minion, which sees you grow to fill the entire screen – with the camera spinning round for added effect (see above).
There are two areas in Despicable Me: Minion Rush: Gru’s Lab and Gru’s Residential Area. The former looks quite sterile, though that’s probably intentional, and it’s nice to see it juxtaposed with the ultra-bright outside section.
There are other neat touches here and there in Despicable Me: Minion Rush, such as crashing through houses in Gru’s Residential Area, sliding down a, uhm, slide, and a Sonic 2-style half-pipe in the lab.
All in all, Despicable Me: Minion Rush is pretty crazy; there’s always something happening, and the action is super-fast.
And if all that wasn’t enough, there are also two boss fights, with the camera again spinning round so you’re running into the screen. Nice.
Alas, the usual endless runner gripes remain intact. It all feels a bit samey after a while, and occasionally suffers from here-we-go-again syndrome when you start a new run.
And being free, Despicable Me: Minion Rush is keen for you to spend money on in-app purchases; saving up for stuff (power-ups, costumes) is a sloooow process.
Worse still, I’m at an impasse with the missions, as they’re all currently friend-based and I’m unable to sign in via Facebook. The upshot is that I can't increase my multiplier.
But putting those mostly predictable negatives aside, I’m definitely a fan of Despicable Me: Minion Rush, and it’s nice to see a decent movie tie-in for once from Gameloft.
- Looks awesome
- Some completely OTT power-ups
- Boss fights
- It’s yet another endless runner
- The freemium stuff
- The friend-based missions
Summary: Despicable Me: Minion Rush is easily one of the most polished endless runners we’ve seen to date, and absolutely worth a look even if you’ve a) never seen Despicable Me, and/or b) played a zillion such games before.
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation), iPad 2 Wi-Fi, iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G, iPad (3rd generation), iPad Wi-Fi + 4G, iPad (4th generation), iPad Wi-Fi + Cellular (4th generation), iPad mini and iPad mini Wi-Fi + Cellular. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.