A flippin good time
Sometimes it’s the most basic ideas that end up being the most effective. After launching ‘Aww Flip’, I was initially bamboozled at its simplicity – a screen full of numbered tiles must be flipped over as quickly as possible until each one reaches zero and the time runs out. I kept thinking I was missing something – like aliens, machine guns, or even aliens with machine guns, but the more I played, the more I realised ‘Hey, this is it’, and like the first time I discovered chocolate covered broccoli, the more addicted I became.
Sure, there are power-ups in the sense of tiles that either speed up or slow down the clock, plus a few more devious ones that can really have you shouting ‘Aww, *!@’ (more on that later), but in essence, it’s as uncomplicated as a game where you flip over numbered tiles to reach zero before the time runs out. Hmm.
The instructions suggest using two fingers to turn over the tiles, but I found this extremely difficult until I realised that using two thumbs was preferable (I was actually using my index and middle finger – please, no sniggering). A game like this requires responsiveness to be spot-on, otherwise frustration will ensue. Can you imagine trying to flip the last three tiles with 3 seconds left only for them to brazenly refuse to acknowledge the fact you’ve been smashing your thumbs against the screen? iPhone = Out the window.
Fortunately everything works as it should, and it makes for a fun, rapid-fire experience. It’s a game that can lure you into a false sense of security as you blaze through the tiles – just when you think you’ve got thumbs like The Flash, the last tile hits you where it hurts and switches all the remaining tiles to 1’s, meaning you’ve got to flip them all over again with no extra time. Can anyone say ‘Aww *!@’?
They’re not always sadistic though, some special tiles slow down the clock, giving you more time to flip the bird. Needless to say, it’s a relief when you uncover one of these.
This results in a speedy title which regularly throws up tense situations where you’re frantically slamming tiles, yet simultaneously dreading the appearance of one of the evil ones that sets you back by ten seconds. The more successful you are, the more the fear grows. It’s a wonderful kind of dissonance.
Aww Flips unpretentious nature continues with lo-fi visuals and an electronic soundtrack that sounds like it’s being played live, and completely at random, combined with Space Invader-type sound effects. You get the feeling the developers said ‘*!@ the pretty *!@, let’s just make them suffer.’
And when you play ‘Aww Flip’, you see exactly what I mean.
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