GoatUp ($1.99) by Llamasoft is a goat-related platformer game. Are you intrigued? I hope so, because this game is one-of-a-kind.
The goal behind this game is to lead a goat and her family as high up on the platforms as you can to get the highest score. You start off with zero children, but you’ll keep gaining them one-at-a-time as you get higher. These children will form a “tail” behind you, which you use to kill enemies (the only way to kill them, otherwise you die). Along the way, you will find hidden objects and power-ups to collect as you graze the platforms, billie goats to kiss, and enemies to kill. And all of these will earn you points! Already sounds weird, yet awesome, right?
The graphics are reminiscent of 8-bit games, and that definitely adds to the charm of the title. There isn’t much of a soundtrack to listen to as you play (which can be a good or bad thing, depending on the person), but the game will emit sound effects as you jump, graze, collect items, and kill enemies with your tail of children. Also, you get to hear a goat every time you select an option from the main menu (more info and controls).
The controls of the game are very simple – you move your goat left and right, and jump. There are three different control schemes for this: Type-A, Type-B, and Type-C.
Type-A and Type-B split the bottom of the screen into areas for you to control the goat with. Type-A has you move on the left side and jump with the right, while Type-B switches these around. Type-C uses tilt-to-move and tap-to-jump, which I found much easier than the other two options.
As you progress in the game, you will go through different areas. Each area has its own specific platform appearance, items, and enemies. Those attractive billie goats are the same in every area though, so make sure to kiss them!
You get Goat Over (the goat way of saying “game over”) when you are killed by an enemy or fall off the screen. Since this is a platformer, you will need to be fast to get as high as you can. There’s no mercy for slow or careless goats!
GoatUp will keep track of various statistics from your most recent game as well as lifetime games. Information kept include amount of unique items, highest platform reached, goats kissed, and most kids at a time.
This is definitely an easy-to-play but hard-to-master game. The controls are extremely simple and easy to figure out, and I’m sure it will have you playing for a good while. Luckily, OpenFeint and Game Center are integrated for leaderboards and achievements, so there is some replay value here.
The thing that bothered me the most about GoatUp is the fact that each game starts out the same. The platforms, billie goats, items, power-ups, and enemies are always in the same spot. This can definitely make it less fun to replay again, at least until you reach the next area, and the one after that (if you are good, anyway).
I hope that the developers introduce some level randomization with each new game, because it would definitely add more spice to the game.
However, GoatUp is still extremely fun and hard to put down once you get going. I mean, really, how can you not find it intriguing to play as a goat? That alone should sell the app.
With GoatUp being only $1.99 in the App Store as a universal app, you should probably give it a spin on your iPhone or iPad. You’ll like it – trust me.