In the world of mobile gaming, simple puzzle titles like Angry Birds can draw in huge amounts of players due to their accessibility. Armor Games, the company responsible for many flash games like Strike Force Heroes and Burrito Bison Revenge, has a new entry into the mobile puzzler arena with Follow the Rabbit, a simple platformer where you direct your character toward the goal with careful swipes. Even though there are some entertaining sections in the over 100 levels Follow the Rabbit offers, the lack of challenge in most of the game makes it pale in comparison to other titles available for download on the App Store.
The controls are simple, using side swipes left and right to move. Swiping up sends you leaping straight into the air, also allowing you to jump through the bottoms of platforms Mario-style. Puzzles often involve evading bats, spiky-headed cube monsters, and wall-crawling globs of green slime while grabbing the three gold coins in each level on the way to the exit. Coins are optional for beating the level, but you have to have a certain number of coins overall to unlock the next set of levels. The levels are rather small, with each stage able to be cleared in a matter of seconds. You’re given a score at the end of each level based on the amount of time it took to clear the stage and how many of the three bonus coins were obtained, but I often found myself getting better scores by skipping the coins and heading straight for the exit. Without a real incentive to gain all the collectibles, the stages felt a little cheesy.
There are 5 sets of levels in Follow the Rabbit right now, with plans to create more in the future. Each set of levels has its own theme and game mechanic, ranging from switches that make floors appear and disappear to coins that vanish with time, forcing you to clear the level quickly. The most interesting of these stages was actually the last one, “Gravi-tea,” a stage where tilting the device shifts the gravity of the level. It’s a shame that they decided not to include that mechanic until the end of the game, as it might have made the rest of the game more entertaining. Instead, most of the puzzles felt overly simplistic, with only a couple choice stages really making me think about strategy or timing. Perhaps this will appeal to some gamers, but anyone who has felt the joy of finally clearing a difficult stage in Angry Birds will probably find this title a bit lacking.
Follow the Rabbit is a good game for very casual puzzle gamers but doesn’t quite measure up to other titles available in the App Store. The graphics look great on an iPad and the controls are rather precise, but the gameplay itself just didn’t feel up to snuff. Even with 125 levels to offer the game only took me a couple short hours to clear, and without leaderboards or a high score chart, I didn’t feel the drive to go back and try to raise my score. The game has a strong engine, though; hopefully the teams at Armor Games and Gamaga will be able to make more challenging stages in the future. In the meantime, wait and find something that will hold your attention for a little longer.