Review: Tugi Tap iOS Game

In the App Store, the description tells us that this game is “a fast action, puzzle game in a nicely designed cartoony world”. I’ll touch on that first part in a moment, but first let me give props where it is due.

New day.. New game in the app store. That’s how most reviews begin on this site. But being that I’m here to add a new voice… we aren’t going to do that this time. So rather then the generic canned statements to start things off, lets just jump right into the meat of it.

The developers over at OMI have written in to us requesting a review of their very first foray into the App Store game section. Now normally Im pretty brutal with my app reviews, but given this IS their very first go at this, I’m inclined to cut them a little slack on some things.

In the App Store, the description tells us that this game is “a fast action, puzzle game in a nicely designed cartoony world”. I’ll touch on that first part in a moment, but first let me give props where it is due.

Artwork
The artwork in this app is very well done. Is it perfect? No. But it is what they claim it to be, delightfully cartoony. I love the icon (seen above). It is almost worth the price of admission to see this delightful little angry fireball on my spring board. He really makes the icon pop. When you open the game you are met with a delightful main page that eludes to the promise of a good game. One would assume that the charming creature on the left there is a Tugi. Now as you can see, he seems a bit loony, perhaps its because he has to sit around and listen to the games soundtrack all day long… but I will touch on that in bit. We are talking about the artwork. All throughout the game the graphics are pleasing and well thought out. Nice job guys +1 for effort.

Music
Im not going to sugar coat it. Its BAD. As I mentioned before, it is my steadfast belief that the little purple dude on the main page has been driven into a drooling rage by it. The only saving grace was the little yellow mute button just below him that ended my torment (believe it or not the purple guy smiled at me when I turned it off…). All joking aside, although it may not have been intentional, it sounds as if they were going for Angry birds, but wanted to be slightly different. It did not work out. I will leave it at that.

Game Play
Now we get into what interest most people in these articles, how does the game actually play? As you will recall, as I was quoting the opening line from the games description, I said I would touch on that later. Well its later, here we go.
Simply put, they lie. From what I can tell, there is no puzzle element to this game to speak of. You literally are peking away at little cartoon guys, trying to get as many as possible to get points. All while avoiding bombs that randomly appear on screen as if tossed in my some angry monster who just wants the music to stop.

Not sure where the puzzle element comes in to play. Aside from the blatant lack of puzzles in this puzzle game, overall the experience is not god awful. When you start playing you will notice fairly quickly that there seem to be some kinks to work out. For starters, the Tugis are literally raining down on you. This would be fine, except for some reason the app will recognize only one touch at a time. So as fast as your finger might be, its difficult to tap them all with one finger. Additionally I taped on many a Tumi that didn’t react and just passed by.

As you will read on the instructions pain, can get bonus points for getting combos of a specific type of animal in a string. This would be cool except very regularly for me a Tumi would fall down the edge of the screen where I could not reach him, causing my sting to end. Power ups are available to get even more points, but to be honest I had a hard time seeing them make any real difference in game play besides presenting you with things like a giant squid that does nothing but sit there and look goofy, or a seemingly harmless cloud. Not sure what Im missing on that one.

Conclusion
As much as I hate to say it, I cannot recommend this game in its current form. Perhaps in a future revision when they get the kinks worked out, it will be fun. But for not its an exercise in annoyance and frustration. Its only saving grace is its artwork. You can tell someone put in some amount of work to make special. Unfortunately, good artwork is only part of what you need for a quality game.

Maybe I’m wrong though (I’m not), check it out for yourself! Its available on the App Store right now for just $0.99

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