Joining those two is Wave Wave, a game that stakes a serious claim for Toughest Smartphone Game of All Time. It’s great.
Wave Wave is perhaps best described as a cross between Snake and Jetpack Joyride. On acid. And ecstasy.
The controls are pretty simple: hold your finger down to raise the wave; let go and it automatically falls. All you have to do is guide the wave safely through a gauntlet of triangles.
Sounds easy enough, right? What if I told you my high scores are generally sitting around the single digit seconds?
The first thing you’ll have to contend with in Wave Wave is the speed. The game races along relentlessly at a furious rate, and really pushes the bounds of human reaction time.
In INFINITY mode, Random is arguably the most brutal setting (the others being Rotator and Repeater). In addition to the speed problem, a female voice will randomly shout words like “Lean!”, “Spin!” and “Crank!”, making the display twist and turn and contort like some hideous polygonal nightmare. I almost feel a tad nauseous thinking about it.
Indeed, Wave Wave carries the serious warning: “CAUTION: Can cause nausea and viewing discomfort. If you experience these while playing other games then Wave Wave may be difficult to play. There is an option in the "setup" page to turn off certain visual effects if the game is hard to watch.”
As such, you can expect Wave Wave sessions to last mere minutes at a time, before you find yourself giving up and adopting the recovery position.
And that’s just on Wave (tough) setting. The adventurous gamer might fancy cranking it to Waves (hard), Wavier (super), Waviest (insane) or Wave Wave (extreme). There’s a sixth unlockable difficulty that I doubt I’ll ever see, but you get the idea: hard as fug.
On the plus side, even if you struggle with the difficulty, Wave Wave offers five different game modes, including Levels, which has plain old A-to-B challenges with less of the randomness. Plenty to explore, all in all.
Oh, and the soundtrack, with music by Danimal Cannon and Zef, is absolutely fantastic and fits perfectly with the visual insanity.
But again, be prepared for a fair bit of anguish, both physical and mental. If you’re a glutton for gaming punishment, Wave Wave is the game for you. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to stick my head down the toilet.
- Brutal, but mostly fair
- Plenty of games modes
- The soundtrack
- Will melt your eyes…
- …and your brain
- Seriously difficult
Summary: Wave Wave is like some sick psychedelic experiment in human reaction time. Morbidly fascinating, and oddly enjoyable.
Developer: Tom Janson
Price: £1.99 @ App Store
Compatibility: Requires iOS 6.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.