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Mikey Hooks review (iOS / Universal)

August 8, 2013

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10 word description: 2D platformer sequel. Speedruns, coin collecting, hazards, outfits, Game Center.

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10 word review: This is what the first game should have been like.

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You will like this if you enjoy: 2D platform games with an emphasis on speed-running, but also plenty to do for those of us who don’t see Game Center leaderboards as the sole reason for playing video games. 

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The good news: Judging it against its predecessor, this is a significant improvement. Reliable, responsive controls that can be customised. Hazards and player death! Yay! Spike pits! Clean, cheerful, functional graphics. A good mix of speed-runs, coin collecting, secret (shorts) hunting. iCloud sync works. Offline (preset) target scores to beat for those of us who don’t care about Game Center. Story and Race modes. Runs perfectly well on older devices including 1st gen iPad and 3rd gen Touch.

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The bad news: The emphasis is still quite heavily on speed running and the story mode can easily be completed in under an hour. That isn’t going to be “bad news” for anyone who loved Mikey Shorts, I just thought it needed to be mentioned. 

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Arcadelife verdict: Mikey Hooks, while staying true to the style and overall feel of Mikey Shorts, adds just enough to narrowly avoid looking more like Mikey Shorts Part 1.5 than a new game in its own right. It’s fun. For me, it’s a hell of a lot more fun than Mikey Shorts and I happily played the story mode through to the end in a few quick sessions. The levels still display an element of copy/paste in their layout but the addition of the hooking mechanism and the incentive to replay the levels in different ways (speed runs, coin collecting and shorts hunting) goes a long way to improve the experience.

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The best additions, of course, are the hazards and the potential to actually fail a level. The countless costumes and hook colours add a bit of variety, but they’re just as unnecessary as they were before. The IAP for double coins, a coin magnet, extra lives and retro graphics is similarly unnecessary.

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Overall, a fun platformer sequel that will please fans of the original and should also pull in a few of us who didn’t really appreciate Mikey Shorts.   

Arcadelife rating

Presentation – 8.5/10
Visuals – 8/10
Controls – 9.5/10
Content – 8.5/10
Fun – 8.5/10
Final rating – 8.5/10

A HOOK, BUT STILL SHORT

Rating categories explained here.
Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.0.1
iTunes link

BeaverTap Games website link

Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
5th gen iPod Touch (iOS 6.1.3)
4th gen iPod Touch (iOS 6.1.3)
3rd gen iPod Touch (iOS 5.1.1)
4th gen iPad (iOS 6.1.3)
1st gen iPad (iOS 5.1.1)
This review was typed on a Das Keyboard Model S mechanical keyboard – check them out, they’re really rather groovy.
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