Freeverse’s Parachute Ninja is a casual pick up and play that will have you playing for either 2 minutes or 2 hours. Packed with features, you will never be bored of the choices the game has to offer.
It all starts as the protagonist of our story becomes an orphan due to a mysterious enemy. Our hero must make the long trek to avenge the destruction of his village and find his last surviving relative (which, strangely enough, looks a lot like Mr. Miyagi from “The Karate Kid.”) But it’s only his head. In fact, the whole family is either just a head, or very rotund.
Soon you are a ninja who must fling and float from slingshot to slingshot collecting fireflies, in an effort to find who set fire to your village.
Graphics: Despite being a little “head” the graphics are crisp and colorful. Lots of fun screens are interspersed into the story, making it a fantastical adventure, unlike some games who make story modes in name only. Some of the game elements need some imaginative skills to make out however, such as the fireflies that looked to me like like sparks at first, and the parachute that looks like an umbrella pops out of the main character’s head.
Controls: The controls could not be easier. Pull back on the slingshot and you will fly in the direction you aim. Simple. Tap on the screen and a little umbrella will appear (the parachute) which will allow you to regain your footing if your shot was a bit off. Tilting the device will allow you to float back to a platform so you can try again if needed. Fling, touch, tap and tilt – the most simplest of controls available on an iDevice make this the perfect diversion. There is even an option for tilt calibration in the latest version to make your parachuting more accurate.
Gameplay: There are two modes of play to Parachute Ninja. Story and Survival modes allow you two completely different experiences. There are 30 levels in story mode throughout four environments. In addition to the slingshots, bouncing platforms, enemies, intricate angles and more will challenge you. Several checkpoints in the form of a gong are in each level so you can experiment with your shots as much as you need. Collecting fireflies adds to your score, hitting obstacles subtracts some of your collected fireflies to decrease your score; both of which contribute to the bar across the of the screen to earn you one, two or three tic marks for the levels. Go back and try to improve your score in story mode if you like by collecting more fireflies. Combos are possible by collecting more fireflies in one pass.
Not in the mood for story mode, survival mode is perfect for just trying to get as high as you can.
Plus Integration: Achievement whores will be happy to know that Plus is included in this game to compare your scores world wide, as well as earn achievements to boost your Plus ranking.
The unexplained: There isn’t much about this game I didn’t like. But, I do like things to have an explanation. Therefore, it’s puzzling to me why when you reach a checkpoint the water level below you rises and when you subsequently miss a shot you fall into the rising water. The water waits for you to reach a checkpoint to rise.
Music: As you can guess its quite stereotypical and while nice at first, it gets a little grating as you move along. Luckily there is an option to shut the music off but allow the sound of your falling into the water to remain.
In summary, if you have liked games like the classic Doodle Jump or the newer Bird Strike, you will love Parachute Ninja. It combines all those elements with a story mode, a survival mode, cute graphics and great strategic game play for whatever suits you at the moment. So my little grasshopper, find your way to Parachute Ninja.
Version 1.1 of Parachute Ninja is published by Freeverse and was reviewed on a 2g iTouch using 3.x OS. It is currently available for $0.99. There is also a lite that was just released available to try.