APP NAME: Temple Run
DEVELOPER(S): Imangi Studios
GENRE(S): Endless, Action
RELEASE DATE(S): August 4th, 2011
Whether it’s Indiana Jones, Lara Croft, or Nathan Drake there is always some character taking an Idol from a Temple. In Temple Run, you play as an unnamed character who has taken a cursed idol, and is now running for his life as demon guardians are in hot pursuit. Now only are you dealing with pursuers, but you also have to navigate your way back out of the Temple across stone passageways, wood bridges, and even the tops of rocks. Temple Run is a new entry into the endless running game, but adds a number of new elements to make it unique and engaging.
First off, it’s a 3D running game rather than just a 2D side scroller giving you all new paths to take. Every time you play, there is a random assortment of paths, and there are multiple forks allowing you to pick your own path. Another new element is the super simple gesture based controls so you simply swipe the direction you want the runner to take. Just swipe left or right to turn, and up or down to jump or slide as you face all kinds of obstacles. As you’re running along you need to have quick reaction times to make turns or you’ll run right off into the murky waters below.
There are also tree roots, fire ropes, and demon traps to jump or slide over, as well as regular gaps to jump. You never know what’s coming next, and there are just so many possible ways to die. The longer you run, the faster the game gets requiring split second reaction as you need to recognize the obstacle and swipe in the right direction. No two games play the same, and just choosing to go right or left can change the current game. There are also coins to collect, and you can tilt your device for the runner to move from side to side on the path to collect the coins.
The coins allow you to get power-ups at the in-game shop which can give you coin boosts, or let you cheat death. You earn coins at a good rate so that the upgrades are accessible, and you don’t feel required to use an in-app purchase to buy more coins. The coins do a great job of providing another objective beyond simply surviving for as long as you can. The game also ties Game Center achievements to your point multiplier, so the more you earn, the bigger your multiplier is, similar to Tiny Wings.
The best aspect of Temple Run is that it keeps you coming back with such engaging gameplay that it will have you saying, “just one more time”. What else could you expect from Imangi Studios who have developed Harbor Master and GeoSpark which have some of the highest replay factors in the App Store. Temple Run also includes an amazing design with such fine detail in all of the surroundings even as you whiz by.
Temple Run ($0.99, iPhone) really gets everything right so there’s never a dull moment, and so much entertainment throughout. The game has a brilliant pace as you face all kinds of obstacles with each requiring different actions. There is an exquisite design from the silky smooth controls to the excellent visuals. Overall, the gameplay is just so engaging that you’ll keep coming back to it, and the style is perfect for short bursts, and you’ll be surprised after you’ve been enjoying it for an hour.
Temple Run is a must buy for $1 that is the best endless running game in the App Store that you’ll love every minute of. For the amount of time you’ll end of spending with the game for the limited price, it will feel like you stole a sacred idol.