On the merit of such an ingenious title alone, Turbo Grannies demanded our attention. We were very curious about whether Swedish development house Imperial Game Studio could pair the game’s name with an equally awesome gaming experience. Want to take a guess on whether they were successful? After applying some Bengay to your index finger, click the link to find out.
The premise for Turbo Grannies is clever enough. While there’s no real storyline to follow, you’re controlling a granny who’s had her fill of the nursing home. Somehow she gets a hold of a powered wheelchair, allowing her to go cruise the streets for excitement.
Go, granny, go!
This is a casual game, designed to compete with the Angry Birds and Tiny Wings of the world. The gameplay is simple: holding the right side of the screen accelerates granny’s cart, while the left side puts on the brakes. Tilting the iDevice left or right adjusts the balance of the cart. You get three different environments, each with multiple levels to conquer. They’re all essentially the same, with dips and inclines designed to get granny airborne. Scoreboards for best times are saved locally and via Game Center.
With the scope of the game being fairly limited, the big question is whether it’s actually fun. Unfortunately, Turbo Grannies is about as fun as an eye exam for an elderly person. It’s missing that ‘one more run’ intangible that makes other casual games stick. While the mechanics and physics are solid, we found that the tilting was a bit sensitive, causing granny to fall off her cart way too often.
Grind the rail.
The aspect that shines the most in Turbo Grannies is the audio and visual presentation. Everything looks and sounds extremely polished. The different worlds have their own visual style and it all clicks. Gameplay is smooth, and the engine itself proves very capable.
We wanted to love these grannies, but it’s all about the details when it comes to addictive casual games. Hopefully the guys at Imperial Game Studio can take lessons from other successful casual games like Ninjatown, Tiny Wings and Angry Birds. No matter how original a game’s gimmick is, there has to be a unique quality that helps it stand out in a sea of competitors all vying for the consumers’ buck.