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iPhone App Video Review: Finger Shoes

by Andrew Koziara

Finger Shoes is a fascinating little title developed by Kaxan Media and published by Chillingo. I wanted to review this simply because it looks unlike any other app I’ve seen. The game play is fun and challenging and the visuals and music are quirky. That’s all just to lure you in, so you don’t expect the frantic tapping and hand cramping that comes complimentary with the app.

The gameplay consists of tapping on these little star tiles as they scroll towards you, as if you are walking, or in most cases, playing hopscotch through the various levels. You can only miss three tiles before it’s game over. Many tiles are covered with various obstacles themed for the level they reside in. You get rid of them with a tap or a flick, and then have to tap the tile a second time to activate it. Make sure you get rid of obstacles as soon as they appear over the horizon. It’s just a lot easier that way. Each level also has three hidden sparkling shoes to collect, which appear randomly in the level so you can’t memorize their locations. The only way to get a perfect score is to find all the shoes and not miss a single tile. There is also a strange Time Trial mode, in which you can miss as many tiles as you want, but doing so stops you dead in your tracks. There is a button that makes you start jogging, eventually breaking into a full on sprint, and you have to keep hitting it to speed things up, but not so much that you miss half of the tiles. It was a very weird play mode; I didn’t really get into it.

Looking at the early levels, this might seem like a very easy going casual game, but this game is no walk in the park. The later levels throw so many tiles at you with so many obstacles, it will be hard enough just to survive, let alone find all the levels shoes. Sometimes the shoes only pop into view for a couple seconds before vanishing out of the side of the screen. It can feel rather unfair. The later levels also take the longest to complete, which makes you not want to keep replaying them to perfection. I think you’re supposed to play this game with two fingers, simulating that walking experience, but I just tapped like crazy with one finger. Doing this was surprisingly tiring though, and my hand cramped up a few times.

This makes those last levels even harder, when your accuracy starts to suffer due to hand fatigue. All in all, it only took me less than an hour to completely MASTER the adventure mode, and I didn’t feel compelled to play Time Trial. I enjoy the quirky graphics, though the music really got on my nerves after a while. The levels offer a lot of variety, ranging from jungles to cities, and even the moon. I admire the innovation this app brings to the table, even though it’s basically a quasi Guitar Hero or DDR game. There are also Crystal leader boards as well as achievements to nab. The app is only one dollar, so pick it up if it looks like something you’d enjoy. Take a walk on the wild side!

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