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Ninjatown: Trees of Doom!

For: iPhone   Also on: Android

Gentle tree-tment

Product: Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! | Developer: Venan Entertainment | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action | Players: 1 | Networking: wireless (network) | Version: Europe | App version: 12.1MB
Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! iPhone, thumbnail 1
They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Trying using that as an excuse when you're spotted attempting to "imitate" someone else's answers in an exam room.

Whenever a game makes a big splash on iPhone, it's the equivalent of someone standing up in that very same exam hall and repeatedly shouting that they know all the answers at the top of their lungs.

Chances are, anyone in the vicinity is going to have a look at just what they've scribbled down. To be fair, you can't blame some studios for being inspired by those games that do manage to tick all the right boxes.

Barking up the wrong tree

One such class swat is Doodle Jump: a game that's already been reproduced, on the whole fairly poorly, almost as many times as it's been downloaded.

At first glance, Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! falls firmly into this category, and while it arrives in a post-Doodle Jump world, only in its wildest dreams would it ever be worthy of such a comparison. In truth, this is far more like high-flying action of Bird Strike, but with most of the fun sapped clean out.

What's on offer here is an adequate, though tame height-climber. Using a pair of tree trunks lining the sides of the screen, your only goal is to climb as high as possible. You do this by holding a finger to the screen above your ninja's current position to make him climb. It should go without saying that you're unable to backtrack or climb back down.

Die another way

As you might expect, the path above is rarely easy and leaping from one trunk to the other is done by tapping the other side of the screen (it's worth nothing that jumping across also heaves you up a portion). Alternatively, you can grab hold of a branch and flick yourself some distance into the air.

One brush with any of the game's hazards is enough to send you packing. Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! is a survival story in which you have to climb ever higher while circumventing enemies resembling inordinate splodges of nothingness to purple gunk leaking from the tree bark.

That's a fine setup if the world you're inhabiting is particularly enthralling or entertaining. Unfortunately, the game comes with more than a hint of "been there, done that." It's as if a docile side-scrolling platformer has been turned on its side and made vertical.

Kneed in the ninjas

There are the odd high points, nevertheless. Power-ups induce a touch of fun into proceedings, with a rocket-pack pushing the game firmly into Bird Strike territory and shields allowing you to take a risk or two without fear of instant death.

Yet, if there's one thing you should take from this review, it's that Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! is not, in any shape or form, another Doodle Jump. For better or worse, it's not another Bird Strike, either.

If you happen exhausted both of the above, however, then Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! is a competent, if not entirely accomplished, way to spend the odd five minutes.
Ninjatown: Trees of Doom!
Reviewer photo
Keith Andrew | 17 May 2010
Not in either Doodle Jump or Bird Strike's league, Ninjatown: Trees of Doom! comes with a similar height-chasing set-up, but you could well get bored before it hits the top
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