Starry ($0.99) by Haru Soft will have you wishing upon a star, literally.
Endless runners have become quite a popular genre for iOS and mobile gaming, and it's no surprise why. These games are fun to pick up and play for a few minutes, or you can spend hours on them. They are suitable for casual gamers and even seasoned veterans. Haru Soft has released another of these games into the App Store, but this one is more endearing than others.
The game features a young girl named Starry, who has a magical wand that allows her to collect colorful stars. That’s right — have you ever wanted to grab stars right out of the sky? Now you can!
Controls are very simple — you simply drag your finger around the screen to move Starry, and collect stars with the tip of the wand. The game offers two different control schemes: left or right. This makes it easy to play the game, regardless if you are left or right-handed. Two game modes are offered: Adventure and Sprint.
With Adventure mode, you will be given a specific star color to collect (displayed in the corner), and you will have to avoid other stars. If you touch the wrong stars, you will take a hit on your health bar, which is shown at the top. As you collect the right stars, your health bar will fill up incrementally and you will fly faster. But watch out — the color changes every now and then, so you will have to pay attention to which color you must gather.
As you progress, you’ll encounter creatures and obstacles. As you would guess, touching any of these will make you lose health. The game ends once you run out of health, and your score is calculated on the number of stars you collect, how fast you end up, and how far you go.
Sprint mode doesn't have any enemies, obstacles, or colored stars for you to round up. It also doesn’t go on forever, as it is set to a certain distance. All you have to do in Sprint mode is collect stars increase your velocity, thus reaching your top speed. While this may seem easier, it can also be pretty challenging to beat your previous scores.
There are leaderboards and achievements through Game Center, so you can compete with others to see who is the best star collector.
I found the graphics in Starry to be cute and charming, and suitable for casual gamers of all ages. The music that plays during games is also very whimsical, adding icing to the cake. Overall, the game is a simple and delightful package that is great for kids or even adults, who just want to relax with a game after a hard day of work.
The only problem with the game that I have is the fact that you will have to keep going back to the main menu to start a new game. I hope that the developer makes it possible to start a new game immediately after a game ends in a future update. I would also love to see various objectives to complete, such as in Jetpack Joyride.
Besides that, though, this game is a pleasurable way to pass some time.