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iPad  header logo

Little Amazon

For: iPad   Also on: Android, iPhone

Big problems

Product: Little Amazon | Developer: cTools Studio | Publisher: Bulkypix | Format: iPad | Genre: Casual, Endless running | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Little Amazon iPad, thumbnail 1
There's a fine line between enticing people to try again and flat-out hoping they fail, and it's a line that games adopting the freemium model need to carefully navigate.

It's about balancing rewards and failure, and coaxing players to reach for their wallets to make things that bit easier.

Little Amazon fails at this spectacularly. It's a game that forces you to fail over and over, all the while showing you what you could have won if you weren't such a cheapskate.

And the sad fact of the matter is that there just isn't enough game here to make you care anyway.

Amazon zeta

The game is an endless-runner with a two-button control scheme - one to jump, one to unleash one of the limited number of energy blasts you're granted each turn. There are blobby creatures to jump over, spikes to avoid, and boost-giving orbs to collect.

The aim of the game is to get as far as you can, collecting as many gold coins as possible along the way.

You can spend those gold coins on a variety of boosts to get you that little bit farther next time round, but the rate they're doled out at is stingy to say the least. Sure, you can see a lot of them, but most are out of reach until you've grabbed enough to purchase new abilities.

And the fact that there are new abilities to buy is rammed down your throat at every opportunity. Sometimes you're bludgeoned with adverts for things you need to buy before your run. At other times you're assailed with adverts for other games.

The fact that the game underneath all the adverts and flashing buy buttons isn't very good just compounds matters. The gameplay is dull and plodding, and you'll often find yourself dying because you haven't bought the right jump upgrade yet.

Lost in the Amazon

It's a shame, because there's a solid cartoony endless-runner here, but it gets choked by its overwhelming desire to drop you in a pit or have you run into some thorns. You rarely end a run wanting to try again, and that's something that's just not good enough for a game of this sort.

With a few tweaks and a less aggressive payment model, Little Amazon could be enjoyable. As it is it just feels like you're being priced out of the fun from the get go, and that's a model that doesn't work for anyone.
Little Amazon
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 14 January 2013
There might be a good game somewhere here, but Little Amazon feels far too cynical to recommend
Rate this game >> Average reader score: 
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