Do you remember your earliest biology classes, when you learned that a flower’s petals exist to attract pollinators, foretell your love life, and repel invaders? Well, maybe the first lesson is the only one that applies to reality, but we’ve been playing a lot of Love Me Not.
The game’s name is inspired by the childhood game of tearing petals from a flower to discover whether a crush loves the person with the disregard for flowers. The point of the game is to protect the flower from invading bugs by propelling its petals. It takes a decidedly darker tone by offering hearts to break in order to quickly regain these petals. Being an arcade game, however, the flower always dies in the end, so take what meaning you will.
Love Me Not’s controls are as simple as its concept. Tilting your device makes the petals on the flower rotate, and touching a petal sends it flying out from the flower. Rotating speeds can even affect the flight path of a petal, adding a layer of strategy to the game, which is appreciated given the lack of variety in the bugs. The only issue we had with these mechanics was not having any control over the accelerometer calibration.
The simplistic gameplay is cool, but the game’s animation and music really shine. Your flower takes up half the screen, which doesn’t allow for too much space for artistic renderings, but the developers still manage to impress by changing the entire color scheme in a flash, and cycling the background to go from abstraction to a starry sky in the same time. Ambient electronic music accompanies these stunning yet simple visuals, and the music manages to be both upbeat and urgent.
“Observe as the daisy uses its sword-like petals to repel invaders.”
Our only other complaint is that that’s really all there is to say about the game. Leaderboards exist through Game Center, but achievements are missing altogether, and only a play button, a tutorial, and your personal best score greet you on the main screen. We couldn’t help but want more, and a few more features wouldn’t ruin the game’s simplistic approach.
Love Me Not, despite its rather dark underlying message, is a game that looks, sounds, and feels, pretty hip. We’d prefer the ability to tweak the tilting settings and grab some achievements to better inspire replay, but all of the main ingredients are here, and arcade game fans will likely get unique enjoyment out of this one.