iPhone App Video Review: Ski Safari

Ski Safari is wonderfully absurd. After an avalanche hits your mountain cabin and sends you careening downhill in your bed, your adventure begins. I guess this character sleeps with his skis on, and it doesn’t take long to switch over. You simply have to keep up enough speed to outrun this massive avalanche. What makes it all so much fun is the various animals and other things you’ll be interacting with; whether you’re using a penguin as your skis, riding on the back of a big Yeti, soaring through the sky under the grip of an eagle, or blasting downward in a snowmobile. You can even taxi smaller creatures on the bigger ones, and there are plenty of tricks and combos to pull off, including gliding on clouds.

The mission system is set up like Jetpack Joyride, with each objective giving you a star towards a higher rank. While ‘Joyride’ gave you a sense of progression through purchasable power-ups and costumes, Ski Safari simply has you unlock maximum score multipliers as well as better starting “vehicles,” so to speak. Even if you last for ten minutes at early levels, you won’t place very high on the leaderboards at all with the low starting maximum multipliers. It all really makes this app much more appealing for Game Center leaderboard junkies.

This game is silly and over the top and fantastic, but it can also feel quite repetitive. For the first half hour or so, as you discover more moves and combos and ways of interacting with the environment, everything is great, but the novelty can wear off fairly quickly. Of course, this game isn’t really meant to be played in hour long bursts. Also, completing missions can be irritating as many of them seem to deal with a factor of luck. While this is definitely a good game, it will get better if future updates can add a bit more variety. Ski Safari is iOS Universal and available for one dollar at the time of this review. The flaws I listed don’t detract too much from the experience, and it’s definitely worth playing just for the sheer absurdity and random novelty of it all; totally recommended.

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