FDG Entertainment's Banana Kong lacks the visual impact of Nintendo's Donkey Kong Country, but it's hard to deny the influence of the 1994 Super Nintendo classic. This side-scrolling endless-runner puts you in control of a gorilla exploring a detailed jungle filled with hazards, from crocodiles and piranhas to airplane wreckage and rocks. Meanwhile, there's a huge avalanche of bananas approaching from the left side of the screen, so it's in your best interest to keep the ape on the move. OK, so that's somewhat of a departure from DKC, but at the very least, it's the closest iOS users will get to playing that type of platformer on their iPhones and iPads.
Similar to most running games, Banana Kong benefits from simple controls. Players merely need to tap once to jump, then tap and hold a finger on the screen to glide, which proves useful for collecting bananas, the game's virtual currency. Gathering fruit also serves the purpose of filling the power meter that, once full, allows players to boost with a quick swipe to the right. Not only does this put much-needed space between gorilla and avalanche, but it also lets the character bust through random objects unscathed. Seeing as how one hit kills, this valuable feature proves quite useful.
What's especially cool is the fact that the game randomly generates the terrain each and every time, making things impossible to predict. One play through, for instance, may kick off with vines to swing from, while the next won't introduce vines until much later. The same goes for flowers to bounce off of, or unstable platforms that crumble when stepped upon. The fact that players cannot predict anything helps make Banana Kong more exciting than its competitors.
Beyond that, the in-game shop satisfies a monkey's needs, with such items as Rainbow Bananas worth more than the usual banana, upgrades to the gorilla's animal friends (yes, you can ride a handful of critters) and the always reliable magnet that attracts valuable items; players will also find 1-ups and the ability to bounce on water.
None of this makes Banana Kong revolutionary, but it's still a fun running game that'll keep you entertained through life's more boring moments. We would have released it free-of-charge, but for $0.99, it still represents a fine value.
What's Hot:Randomly-generated levels, catchy music, power-ups and other valuable items.
What's Not:Difficulty ramps up quickly.