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iPhone App Video Review: Paper Monsters

by Andrew Koziara

Paper Monsters is a new platformer from Robots Vs. Wizards, published by Crescent Moon Games. It's a very simple yet fun platformer that is highly accessible; aimed at younger audiences and classic gaming fans alike. Transport yourself into this beautifully rendered paper-mache world and have a grand old time. The game is certainly flawed, but designed to be easily enjoyable by anyone, at least for a while.

This game is clearly an homage to PS3 classic, Little Big Planet. Similar arts and crafts aesthetics, same end of level platforms, unlockable costumes for your little avatar dude, and even a similar introduction with a Stephen Fry sound-alike. The multi-layered levels and complex next generation mechanics are traded in for classic Super Mario Bros. style gameplay, with warp pipes, mouth gates, hidden areas and more. It may look like a modern game, but it's a golden oldie at heart.

The controls are classic iOS platformer. A virtual thumb stick on the left, and tapping on the right for double jumps. The controls always worked just fine. As you play through the games 16 levels and four worlds, you'll have tons of stuff to collect. Aside from the silver and gold buttons which are there more for scoring, each level also has three golden paper clips and a special card hidden away somewhere. The basic platforming is often broken up by different segments, such as the submarine segments of world two. In terms of actually beating levels, this game is easy, but the challenge of course comes from being a completionist and finding everything. Each of the four worlds is capped with a boss battle. Unfortunately, all of these encounters are anti-climactic and underwhelming. They're just far too easy and exploitable, even if this game is for kids.

Should you get bored of the main campaign, there is a more traditional iOS experience to be had in the Dash Mode, which is just a classic auto run platformer. Game Center achievements and leaderboards are both supported as well. The stunning visuals, charming aesthetics and fun music are all top notch, and this game has a lot going for it. The golden buttons you collect allow you to customize your box dude, letting you add your own visual flair to the game. You can even purchase more buttons in-app if you're lazy enough. Even if you're not a fan of "easy" games, things are kept interesting enough for at least one play-through. That's just fine by me, considering it's iOS Universal and only one dollar. Definitely check it out if you don't mind the simplicity, or if you just love classic style platformers.

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