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iPhone  header logo

Cocoto Magic Circus

For: iPhone

This is IT

Product: Cocoto Magic Circus | Developer: Eurocenter | Format: iPhone | Genre: Arcade | Players: 1-2 | Networking: wireless (network) | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0
Cocoto Magic Circus iPhone, thumbnail 1
Anybody who has seen Stephen King's terrifying true life documentary IT should have known better.

If your friend is abducted by a psychotic clown and carried off into a gloomy, derelict circus tent that probably wasn't there five minutes previously, you forget about that person and move on with your life.

Cocoto's parents and school counsellors must have failed him on this particular point of personal safety, because the mad fool simply rushes in after the surely doomed Pixie like this isn't an obvious precursor to some sort of Jungian existential nightmare.

Fortunately for Cocoto, however, this psychotic clown hasn't done his homework either, and the best he's come up with is a series of cheap carny shooting galleries with cute critters and balloons. As lairs go, it's not much; as games go, it's not very much either.

Five-ring circus

Cocoto's intrepid rescue mission takes him (and a bunch of friends who clearly haven't seen IT either) across five themed stages, touting seven mini-game challenges apiece.

These include straightforward objectives like shooting crawling critters before they can reach the centre of the screen, as well as somewhat more complex scenarios where you have to shoot flying critters in order to make them fall into a bucket counterweight. Winning a challenge typically involves hitting a prerequisite number of targets within a short space of time.

The game's very simple to play - just tap targets anywhere on the screen, and your unlicensed, highly lethal, semi-automatic, heavy calibre anti-personnel (dart) gun will take care of business. Just don't go into a blind critter killing frenzy, because inadvertently shooting any of the red balloons that occasionally stray in between them can have unintended consequences, including time acceleration or flipping the perspective 180-degrees.

What's really under the big top

Some stages exhibit latency issues, however, with the actual shot lagging somewhat after tapping. It's not significant enough to stop you getting from level to level, but it reduces your precision score.

Visually, Cocoto Magic Circus is nice enough, touting a kind of cel-shaded-but-not-actually-cel-shaded style, and character design that's almost reminiscent of something like Viva Pinata: Pocket Paradise.

The sound design is entirely unremarkable, although the omission of authentic circus music is probably a point in its favour. The game also features an online competitive multiplayer mode, as well as leaderboards.

Although the game looks and plays well for the most part, it's also extremely limited in scope - each challenge is a thinly disguised variation of the previous one, and it's not especially clever to begin with. Unless you spend a substantial amount of time intoxicated, this is probably a game to pass along to the kids instead.
Cocoto Magic Circus
Reviewer photo
Tarryn van der Byl | 16 March 2010
Attractive presentation can't make up for a lack of substance - just like a real circus!
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