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iPhone  header logo

Save Yammi

For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

No, save yourself

Product: Save Yammi | Developer: Intermost Inc | Publisher: Bulkypix | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action, Puzzle | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.1
 
Save Yammi iPhone, thumbnail 1
Cut the Cut the Rope chat. I know exactly what you're thinking.

One look at those screenshots and you've already dismissed Save Yammi as a shameless rip off of ZeptoLab's multimillion selling rope-slasher.

I know that because, as regular podcast listeners will be aware, that's exactly what I did. But while the game looks derivative, Save Yammi actually pulls away from the Cut the Rope model by quite some distance.

Which might have been a mistake.

Food for thought

In terms of each level's goal, the common factor shared by the two titles is glaring: in both games you have to feed a cute and cuddly character.

It's in the way you achieve this goal that the two games differ. Cutting the rope isn't an option here – instead, you have to lay down rope as you attempt to guide a cookie into into octopus Yammi's mouth, usually at the bottom of the map.

Tapping said cookie is enough to set its on its way, and assuming you don't interfere with its surroundings it'll head towards the floor as gravity intended.

As you might have guessed, interfering with its path is your main task, and Yammi's particular taste means he won't touch his cookie unless it's picked up three yellow stars along the way.

This means that before guiding the cookie down to Yammi you'll need to push and prod it around various parts of increasingly maze-like maps, either tilting your device to send the cookie rolling or drawing ropes to break its fall.

Cookie encounter

Although you have a limited amount of rope at your disposal, you can split it into many separate strands, directing the flow of the cookie towards all three yellow stars and – if you want a perfect score – the red ones too.

As the levels themselves get increasingly more complex the game calls on your ability to draw out and then remove these ropes in the right places and at the right times as the cookie is in motion.

This mechanic distinguishes Save Yammi from the other casual puzzlers on the App Store, but not always for the better.

For starters, the ropes themselves don't follow the exact line you draw, drooping down as they react to their environment. That's fair enough in theory, but it leads to a number of frustrating redraws, where the slightest lump or bump in the rope can severely impinge on or even wreck the movement of the cookie.

Even worse, there's no way of knowing just what form the rope will take until you've finished drawing it on the screen.

Rope for its own neck

Another annoyance is the length of time – or, rather, lack of it – the ropes spend on screen.

It's possible to remove the ropes of your own volition (freeing up rope to use as the cookie continues on its course), but they also fade on contact, often resulting in you frantically redrawing them to stop your prize falling off the screen altogether.

One could argue that this adds to the challenge, but in practice it feels frustrating rather than invigorating, unfairly penalising you and adding an ill-fitting sense of panic.

While there's a lot of quality in the game's level design and presentation, the central game mechanic creaks during extended play. Unfortunately, Save Yammi is itself in need of saving.
 
Save Yammi
Reviewer photo
Keith Andrew | 22 August 2011
Some excellent level design aside, the rope-drawing structure behind Save Yammi tends to frustrate more than it does inspire
 
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