It's been a huge week for mobile running games. There's a new Temple Run that's tied to Disney's Oz: The Great and Powerful. Mini Ninjas went for a jog, Sonic the Hedgehog busted out time-tested moves, and the Monday Night Combat folks launched the Outland Games. All of these running games based on popular properties, and I'm saving crude polygonal kittens from pixel fires.
There's just something incredibly charming about Jones on Fire, finally released this week on iOS (Android coming soon) from Glass Bottom Games. It might be all the kitties. It could be more than that.
Originally designed during a BlazeJam benefit for those affected by the 2012 Colorado wildfire season, Jones on Fire has evolved into a simple and elegant little running/kitty-saving game with a striking retro look.
You play as Emma Jones, firefighter and cat lover, as she makes a series of mad dashes from the safety of her firehouse to a raging inferno in order to save as many cats as she can before they are completely engulfed by flames and eaten by the homeless (the homeless are not in this game). She runs, jumps and slides through the fire and the flames, an army of cats slowly amassing behind her, worshiping her as a god (probably). If she makes it back to the firehouse she can move onto the next level. The goal, as in life, is to rescue as many cats as she can before she dies.
Okay, she never dies. Should she lose her last life the kitties drag her back to the firehouse to start it all over again.
There isn't much to the game, which suits me just fine. There aren't any power-ups to pick up — just cats. There are some upgrades and items you can purchase from the in-game store, but nothing too complex or complicated.
Jones on Fire is just a simple little bit of fun developed by a person who probably thought I'd go through this entire app review without mentioning her name is Megan Fox (no relation.) It's quick, cute, and it sounds wonderful, thanks to a chippy-tuney soundtrack from Michael Nielsen and Nathan Madsen (now available on Bandcamp). As an added plus, it confuses the hell out of my cats.
Edit: I was under the impression that this game was being released free. I was mistaken. The article has been updated to reflect the $1.99 price tag.