While I can understand the appeal of Jetpack Joyride, one of the best mobile games ever made, I could never figure out why Halfbrick Studio's other huge seller, Fruit Ninja, drove so many gamers crazy. Now, days after the release of the developer's latest game, I've finally figured out the secret: Halfbrick Studios is staffed by sorcerers.
That's the only way I can explain why I've spent the entire weekend flinging fish across my screen and screaming at my iPad. That's what Fish Out of Water! is all about — swiping and shouting. Players have a school of six fish, each with different characteristics (weight, buoyancy, aerodymanics). They choose three to send skipping across the water, aiming for distance and a fair number of skips. After the last of the three are flung, a gang of crabs gives you an Olympic-style score.
There's a leveling system that rewards players for completing goals, a little light crafting for power-ups, and the weather conditions change every hour — I've been checking back in regularly — but the most compelling aspect of the game is in the top left hand of the screen here.
As you play, other players' scores flash atop the screen. See? Jake scored an 8.4. I scored an 8. Obviously I need to kick Jake's ass. I swipe. I swipe more. I check back later to see if the weather has changed — maybe I can improve my score. I join a league, representing random people in daily competitions. THIS IS A FISH-SKIPPING GAME.
Okay, maybe it's not just a fish-skipping game. Maybe Fish Out of Water! is the best fish-skipping game ever. It d0esn't matter. What matters is Jake is an asshole, and the red crab keeps giving me low scores. He's probably in cahoots with Jake. Maybe they are lovers. Why can't I break 8.0?!
- Genre: Sports? Fish-skipping?
- Developer: Halfbrick Studios
- Platform: iOS
- Price: $.99