Fruit Ninja

For the hundreds of millions of fans around the world with trillions of fruit sliced - thank you for you amazing continued support! You have made Fruit Ninja one of the most popular games of all time!

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Halfbrick Reveals Upcoming Banana Arcade Mode for Fruit Ninja

Halfbrick has finally pulled back the curtain on its top-secret “Banana” mode update for Fruit Ninja and Fruit Ninja HD. The new mode, Arcade Mode, is a 60-second time attack with a variety of interesting power-ups.

In Arcade Mode, which will be a free update released in early November for Fruit Ninja and Fruit Ninja HD, players will have 60 seconds to receive a high score from chopping fruit. During this time, bombs will deduct from your high score, and special colorful bananas will fly up to give you certain abilities.

These include temporarily doubling your points, slowing down time, or filling the screen with a rush of fruit. You’ll also receive up to three awards, which give you bonus points, and there will be a new weekly leaderboard for this mode.

Check out the trailer for Arcade Mode below. When it hits the App Store, we think it’ll be enough to bring us back to Fruit Ninja yet again.

More stories on Fruit Ninja

Fruit Ninja Gets Pomegranate Update

Fruit Ninja received an update today that adds a pomegranate to the action. Maybe that’s not all that exciting on its own, but this pomegranate slows down time, letting you madly slice away at it for a few seconds, and giving you a point for each slice you perform within the set amount of time. In other words, it adds a nifty little gameplay dynamic to the traditional fruit-slicing action and probably boosts your overall scores. That’s a good thing, right?

The basic gameplay of Fruit Ninja is so pared down and basic that it’s no surprise that each update they push through only adds minor gameplay elements. In fact, the pomegranate never even shows up in Zen Mode– it’s limited to Classic Mode and Arcade Mode. Admittedly, hacking away at a pomegranate isn’t very zen.

Also added in this update is a new musical track in the Dojo section and the ability to view your friends’ all-time highest scores on the results screen. All of which makes Fruit Ninja– already a great game– just a little bit better. If you haven’t played Fruit Ninja yet, you’re missing out.

    Slide To Play Q and A: Halfbrick Studios

    Halfbrick Studios is quickly becoming one of the App Store’s biggest success stories. Their breakout hit Fruit Ninja is sitting pretty at about 1.6 million downloads and was recently featured in an Apple iPad advertisement, while their new release Monster Dash is running up the charts. We spoke to Marketing Manager Phil Larsen about the company’s origins, how they came up with the idea for Fruit Ninja, and what’s next for Halfbrick.

    Can you tell us how Halfbrick got its start?

    Phil: Halfbrick started in 2001 when a number of game college graduates in Brisbane, Australia began a development studio together. After starting with smaller contract work and games for the Game Boy Advance, we eventually moved on the creating high profile licensed games for the DS and PSP.

    Several years ago we wanted to move into independent development with our own IP, and with the introduction of digital distribution channels like XBLA, PSN and now the iPhone, we branched out and managed to have a number of successful games on a diverse range of devices and consoles.

    What were your first games for the iPhone? Was it difficult to develop?

    Phil: Our very first iPhone game was Blast Off, which was a port of an earlier Playstation Mini title. The Mini was very well-received and became a hit, whereas the iPhone version was lacking somewhat due the controls and screen size.

    It’s still a solid game, but as the core experience wasn’t developed from the ground up to work on the iPhone, it didn’t reach the kind of success we’ve since managed to achieve.

    What did you learn from the early experience of developing for the iPhone?

    Phil: The iPhone is unlike any other platform we’ve developed for in the past, and offers a huge range of totally unique challenges. We spent literally weeks researching, studying, playing and discussing how the iPhone works, why some games are successful and what we can do to stand out.

    The core development cycles are relatively smooth, there’s nothing we can’t handle on the technical side of things. It’s the design and philosophy of the iPhone market that one really needs to understand, and that probably formed more work for us than the actual creation of the game!

    How did Fruit Ninja come about?

    Phil: Fruit Ninja was the brainchild of Luke Muscat, who pitched the idea in one of our regular brainstorming sessions. The idea was to create a simple, visceral and satisfying one screen iPhone game. We immediately knew that Fruit Ninja was something special, and it was pretty much fast-tracked through the development cycle to become our first original iPhone title.

    When did you begin to realize that Fruit Ninja was catching on in a big way?

    Phil: Probably just two days after release. Knowing what we knew about Apple’s review process and the iPhone press coverage, I managed to coordinate a pretty solid launch day campaign, so many Halfbrick fans would know about it as soon as it came out. With that in force, we watched the game rise in the Australian charts like a speeding bullet, and reached #2 (below you-know-what) within a day. Then, we started receiving emails from interested gamers and other developers. Apple took notice, pretty much everyone took notice. Within a week, it was full steam ahead and it hasn’t slowed down since then!

    How have you tried to keep Fruit Ninja relevant and interesting through updates?

    Phil: Updates formed a key part of Fruit Ninja’s success, to keep people talking and playing. There’s plenty of games on other consoles that do updates and patches, but they usually fly under the radar. Apple’s system for updates is pretty handy, as it gives players full descriptions and notifications every time they open the App store. We utilized that to the best of our ability and made sure our customers received continued content updates.

    As we support the game, we get more followers and fans who tell their friends about it, and we are more than happy to keep giving them more great stuff like extra modes and Dojo content. The community interaction and discussions, and the emails we receive from players thanking us for a great game is really awesome, and we hope to live up to everyone’s expectations.

    How did you want to follow-up Fruit Ninja? How did Monster Dash begin development?

    Phil: Fruit Ninja was a very original game and testament to the fact that we could create something unique for the iPhone. Monster Dash was a safer bet, not in terms of scope but simply because it is part of an existing genre and gamers would instantly recognize how it plays. At the same time it also gave us full creative freedom to go nuts with all the cool things we want to have.

    It started as a simple flash prototype, and when we realized we could take it to the next level we knew it was a game we would be proud to have in our studio lineup. We could be as creative as we want– levels, monsters, weapons, upgrades– it’s basically a celebration of exciting videogame concepts!

    What are your future plans for Halfbrick?

    Phil: More iPhone games will be on the way for sure. We’re basically expanding into the whole mobile space and looking to see what we can achieve in other areas. The iPhone has basically set a fire under every other mobile provider looking to create new and exciting products, and we want to be there making sure we have the best games available for the appropriate devices. And you’ll be seeing much more of Barry Steakfries!

    10. What is your advice to developers who are trying to get noticed or strike it rich on the App Store?

    Phil: Research, learn, study and then research some more. The development is critical, but you must keep things under control. There’s no sense blowing out a budget with months of misguided development time, because if your game isn’t appealing to the iPhone market at its base level, it probably never will be. Find the right game and get it working, then intelligently choose the areas to polish and become unique! When you have something special, with enough experience you’ll be able to sense it!

    Fruit Ninja Review

    Fruit Ninja is a game so simple that it can be summed up in two words: chop fruit. Against a wooden backdrop, various kinds of fruit (and the occasional bomb) are tossed into the air. All you have to do is slide your finger across the screen to slice the fruit in half before it falls out of view. Three strikes and you’re out. Hit a bomb and you’re out. That’s it.

    The more fruit you slice, the longer you stay around. The longer you survive, the higher your score. It’s a simple game that benefits from its simplicity. If you play it for 10 seconds, then you’ll know everything there is to know about Fruit Ninja. You’ll know it’s fun, and you’ll know you want to keep playing.

    Chop chop.

    After accepting the game’s limited scope, our only complaint is that there’s no way to hike up the difficulty early on. As is, pro players will be bored for the first minute or so as the fruit-tossing kicks into gear. But that’s certainly not the end of the world. The OpenFeint leaderboards and accurate slice recognition more than make up for this shortcoming.

    Even a simple game like this can pack in a few flourishes. Fruit makes a whooshing sound when it’s tossed up, and bombs emit a hiss, which gives just enough warning to keep players on their toes. Each type of fruit makes a different sound when cut (thud, thwack, squish), and the whole time in the background you’ll hear birds chirping and surf lapping at a beach. It almost makes you wish you could stay there forever.

    So grab this game next time you’re waiting in line for something. We can assure you, it’ll slice the time in half.

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