Doodle Jump Micro-Review: Boing!

Doodle Jump: simple title, simple game. Players are what looks like a green Snork-like creature. It's a doodle-drawing platforming test of endurance in which players try to bounce as high as they can. But does simple mean satisfying?

By tilting the iPod/iPhone, the character bounces right or left onto the platforms. Some of the platforms move and some of them break under the players' weight. The platforms have springs, trampolines and even jet packs. Watch out for the monsters that the players can shoot with their Snork snouts. But miss one of the platforms and watch as your cute doodle character falls to his death.

In a nutshell, that's...about it!

Loved
Gameplay: The gameplay is straightforward and stripped down. Jump as high as you can. When you miss a platform, you die. That's it, the end! For a casual title, Doodle Jump does not give players a casual challenge. It's brutal! But with those stakes raised, I actually found myself gasping when my little doodle dude didn't land on a platform and perished.

Motivation: What works and kept me coming back for more was how Doodle Jump draws lines in-game to show how high you and other players have jumped. It's motivating! My wife and I could track each other's progress and have a visual markers. This is basic, bare bones stuff — like trying to throw a rock further than a friend. But it really works.

Art Style: Doodle Jump looks like doodles — drawings scribbled on notebook paper. It's cute and charming. The doodles look great on the iPod/iPhone's screen. The animation is smooth as well.

Doodle Jump is hardly the first jumping endurance game of its kind, but it performs its simple mechanic so very well and does so with a first rate presentation. It's a solid package and not only perfect as a pick-up-and-play, but an ideal title for the Apple platform. Often when I review games, I'll ask my wife to try the title to get an outside opinion. I told her, "This game is really fun", and she kinda laughed that off. Then she started playing. And playing. And playing.

Doodle Jump was developed by Lima Sky and the current version was released on January 12. Retails for US$0.99. A copy of the game was given to us by the publisher for reviewing purposes. Played all game types.

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