You know those grab-a-prize thingies where you attempt to pick up a teddy bear or whatever with a mechanical claw, and the claw inevitably drops the prize, but naïve morons think ‘Surely next time!’ and continue to pump in the pennies?
Well, now you can recreate that experience with Prize Claw for iOS. What a world we live in.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that there mightn’t be much to Prize Claw, but oh how wrong you’d be. Prize Claw is one of the most insanely convoluted games I’ve played in a while. It’s like a prize-grabbing sim with RPG elements.
Let’s start from the top. You have a limited number of grabs, and once your initial batch runs out they regenerate at one per minute. It’s fairly infuriating, but you can use in-game cash to buy more. Or, if you’re really desperate, you can fork over real cash, which – let’s face it – is what the developer hopes you’ll do.
There’s a levelling system in Prize Claw (crazy, huh?). Successfully grabbing items yields XP, and levelling up unlocks special abilities, such as the bomb and the strong claw. The latter, as you might expect, can be used to pick up heavier items. Like grabs, special powers regenerate over time.
Still with me? There’s loads more…
Prizes come in categories, such as bears, animals, cars and dolls. If you complete a set, you can trade them in for cash, grabs, XP points and stuff.
Gems produce different effects, depending on their colour. Green, for example, brings on an item shower, purple gets you more of those elusive grabs, and red nets you some experience points.
In the Machine Shop, you can upgrade your prize machine. There are 10 claws, 10 joysticks, 10 picture frames for the “prize picture”, and six machines. All items can be bought with coins, or you can wait till you level up, but be prepared to put in a hell of a lot of time.
So, plenty to do then, but is Prize Claw actually any good? Well, that’s probably subjective, but personally I was put off by the freemium element, and don’t really see the draw in unlocking all the upgrades.
Having said that, there is something oddly compulsive about it. Maybe just one more grab…
- Lots to do
- Oddly compulsive
- The freemium stuff
- Not entirely sure what the “point” is
Summary: Is this the world’s first prize-grabbing RPG? I think it might just be.
Developer: Game Circus LLC
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.
Price: free @ App Store