Land Sliders (Free) by Prettygreat Pty. Ltd. is a casual arcade game that will keep you busy whenever you have a moment to spare. If you enjoyed games like Flappy Bird and Crossy Road but want something different, then Land Sliders is your next best bet.
While I consider myself to be slightly more than just a “casual gamer,” I will admit that every now and then, I will enjoy the heck out of one of these casual mobile games that many hardcore gamers mock at times. Sometimes I just want to turn my brain off and have a bit of fun without worrying about anything, you know? We’ve all been there. I didn’t get into Flappy Bird at all when it was the big craze, but I did spend a fair bit of time with Crossy Road before I dropped that like a cold turkey as well. When I saw previews of Land Sliders, I just knew I had to get my hands on it and give it a go — it would keep me busy for a bit, right?
Land Sliders has a gorgeous visual style that reminds me a bit of what you would find in The Mesh due to the 3-D models of characters, though not as elegant. In fact, Land Sliders has a much more cartoonish look and feel to it, and that’s okay. The colors in the game are bright and vibrant, so everything is pretty pleasing aesthetically. The finer details and textures in the various environments are done well too, and the animations are smooth and fluid. The soundtrack is rather soothing and calming too, which helps put you at ease while playing.
There is only one game mode in Land Sliders, and the objective is to rack up as many points as you can by exploring and collecting objects that are scattered around on the level. Once you find all of the objects, you can then find the spot that allows you to proceed to the next level and continue your hunt for those items, which are different for each character that you can play as. However, players still need to watch out for dangers that are on the map, such as roaming grizzly bears, dinosaurs, and even prickly cactuses rolling around in wagons mysteriously. If any foes or dangerous objects touch your character, then your run ends and you’ll have to try again, attempting to beat your previous high score. Occasionally, there are quests that you can take on as well, giving you a different goal to strive for to earn rewards.
The controls in the game are simple and are just made for touch screens. Instead of moving the character around, you’ll be moving the terrain by swiping your finger. Your character will always remain centered on the screen because of this, and while it sounds easy, it does take some time to get used to. Since enemies will stick on you once alerted to your presence, it’s important to have a good handling of the controls to escape them before it’s too late. Sometimes, you can get power-up items that make you invulnerable for a short time — use these to your advantage to get rid of threats.
If the default directional controls are not suiting you (drag down to go up, etc.), there is an option to reverse the directions in the settings. Unfortunately, if you’re not a fan of the overall control scheme, it appears that you may have to tough it out since there is no option for something like a virtual joystick.
You earn a point for each item that you successfully collect for your character. Sometimes you will also find some gold coins, and you can earn more coins after each run, collecting daily gifts, and even leveling up your character by getting a high score. The coins are spent to get a random character for every 100 coins, similar to Crossy Road. Each character has their own appearance and can cause some fun special effects during the game, which can be rather delightful. If you find a character that you cannot wait to play as, you can get specific characters for $0.99 a pop. They do not affect gameplay in any way, though — characters are just cosmetic.
Like other casual arcade games, there is going to be a high amount of replay value here, at least until you have collected all of the available characters. Still, with Game Center leaderboards and achievements, this is a title that will keep you occupied for some time.
I’ve only spent a bit of time with Land Sliders since downloading it last night, but so far I’m enjoying it a lot. The graphics are cute and charming, the music is an absolute delight, the controls are intuitive, and the gameplay is fun yet challenging. If you just want a game that will help you kill some downtime, then make sure to give this one a try.
Land Sliders is available on the App Store as a universal download for free with in-app purchases for additional characters.