S/M Studio returns us to the days of handheld and wristwatch LCD games with Great Leaping Lambrettinis. This is their first iDevice game and it faithfully reproduces the look, feel, and beeping sounds of one of those little devices. Absolutely polished with charming graphics, great retro sounds, and a responsive touch interface means you don’t have to try and mash itty-bitty buttons while playing this engaging game.
Your task is to assist the Lambrettinis in their circus act by managing exactly when each performer leaps through a series of three human pyramids and teeterboards. You must be careful; if a performer lands on the wrong spot, he will be rushed off to the hospital. Lose three and the show must end, and it’s game over for you.
Retro Feel: The only thing this game is missing to make it a feel completely like one of those old LCD games is a some little rubbery buttons to push and a compartment to change out watch batteries. Otherwise, the graphics look just like they’re on an LCD screen complete with that slightly grainy gray background and the ghosting in the number display. The sounds are crisp and emulate perfectly the simple beeps and boops you would expect from one of those old games.
Gameplay: The game is part rhythm and part management. The next Lambrettini never hesitates before leaping off the high platform to the teeterboard below so you must constantly keep performers moving through the act. A simple tap is all it takes to get a performer to switch positions on a teeterboard or jump off a human pyramid. Taking risks is also rewarded. Build and maintain 3-tier human pyramids to maximize your points, but you won’t have any cushion if you can’t get a Lambrettini to leap off in time. Every 100 points earned, and you can bring a Lambrettini back from the hospital if you’ve lost a life.
Leaderboards: There are local and global leaderboards which adds competitive replayability to this simple game. It is fun to try and beat your personal best and post it online for everyone to see.
Simplicity: Some may feel the gameplay is too simple. But, it is possible to get into a really nice rhthym and earn a good score. It’s not exactly the deepest game in the App Store, but it is a great time waster.
Achievements: The game does not have any fun achievements to unlock or statistics tracking to add to the fun. It would be neat to see how many Lambrettinis were lost by jumping onto another performer’s head, got hurt trying to jump onto an already full human pyramid, or earning achievements for certain score goals like 50 or 100 performers landed safely.
Great Leaping Lambrettinis is an awesome reproduction of a retro LCD game complete with the graphics and beeping sounds. It is certainly fun and easy to play with global leaderboards adding to the challenge. If you have any fondness for retro style games, then this certainly deserves a leap over to the App Store.