Mr. Crab by Illusion Labs icon

Mr. Crab ($0.99) by Illusion Labs is a platformer game that is anything but side scrolling. Travel upward along a corkscrew course to collect pearls and save baby crabs.

Mr. Crab by Illusion Labs screenshot

Players control the wide-eyed Mr. Crab as he walks sideways along an ever-ascending path with small platforms, adorable enemies, and shiny pearls.

The basic gamplay is similar to traditional platform jumper games. Players must avoid enemies by jumping over them, or destroy them by jumping on their heads. As soon as you see how cute those owls and penguins are, you’ll have a very hard time knocking them off their platform.

Collect pearls as you scurry along the corkscrew-like path. You will also need to track down five baby crabs that are waiting for you to rescue them. The only way to earn three stars on each level is to find all five babies.

If you fall between the platforms, don’t worry. You won’t die. You will just have to keep running from a lower rung of the path. There are blockades that cause Mr. Crab to reverse direction. Sometimes, you’ll need to be running in the opposite direction in order to get to the top and the blockades will make you change direction.

You may be forced off of a platform by one of your enemies. If you collide with a blowfish or scorpion, your babies will be lost and you will drop down to a lower level. You can easily pick your little ones back up by running past them wherever they landed. However, this may take a while, depending on how far out they spread when you fell.

The level ends when you’ve reached the largest object at the top. If you reach the beach ball, or apple, or whatever object it is, with all five of the baby crabs, you will earn full stars. The faster you make it to the end, the more points you will earn.

Mr. Crab by Illusion Labs screenshot

After you’ve successfully completed three levels in one world, you can go back and fight the boss. This bad guy appears on the last level and must be pounced on multiple times in order to knock him off the path. New worlds open up when you complete all levels on previous ones.

This game is lots of fun for fans of simple jumping platform games. It is unique because players must run upward in a corkscrew fashion, even though the basic gameplay is the same as a traditional platformer. The price is just right for an app of this caliber. If you like side-scrolling jumping platform games, this is perfect for you.