Bizarre concept. Sweet presentation. Average game.
The concept behind Gorilla Gondola must have seemed hilarious on paper. Seriously, it's a gorilla riding a gondola. How often do you see that? There's also the whole Donkey Kong factor. He's clearly the most popular video game primate in history, so any association to Nintendo's character, however slight, has to be a good thing.
Perhaps it's pretentious. Depends on your point of view.
That said, we don't feel the game is fun to play, and that's what matters most, regardless of whether there's a gorilla, rabbit or giraffe hamming it up.
The object is to use the cable's momentum to propel said gorilla up and down, collecting bananas while avoiding obstacles, occasionally tilting the iPhone or iPad to sneak the ape through tight spaces and avoid lasers or landmines.
First problem? The frame rate. There's something odd about it that throws off the entire game. At first, we thought it had more to do with our finger swipes and how long we were dragging across the screen, but this didn't seem to matter much. The gorilla goes up and is slow to come down.
Second, what's the point of the gondola? Trick question. There is none. This thing gets stuck on floating mountains and smacks right into those aforementioned landmines. It's weird, because it seems like the gorilla should be the primary focus, but instead you multitask between the two, since a blown up gondola results in losing a life. Quite frankly, we would have been just fine with the gorilla.
Don't get us wrong. We desperately wanted to like this one, especially after spending $1.99 to download it. Developer Electric Pixel Factory did a fine job with the quirky music and the gorgeous hand painted artwork, consisting of a desert, outer space, caverns and a snow-capped winter wonderland. It's easily one of the best looking 2D games on the App Store.
Unfortunately, you have to have addictive play to match the pretty graphics, and we couldn't muster much interest in Gorilla Gondola to make it a go to favorite. Pass this one by.
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 3.0 or later.
What's Hot: Beautiful hand painted backgrounds, weird music, universal, Game Center support.
What's Not: Possible frame rate issues, not much flow to the gameplay, keeping an eye on the gondola.