Flapcraft is a new entry in the popular genre of flying games on the App Store. It’s not an awful game, but it didn’t quite grab us the same way that other games of its type have.
Flapcraft opens with some pretty funny narration about how vikings are timeless warriors, but need a pastime just like anybody else. Their pastime is, of course, riding logs through the air. You, the player, control one of these legendary Norsemen as he soars through the air with reckless abandon. To affect the trajectory of the viking, you tilt your device left and right to pitch his wooden vehicle up and down.
As you might imagine, a tree trunk by itself isn’t the best way to travel through the air. To remedy this deficiency, Flapcraft offers an upgrade shop to make your aircraft function a little less like a log and a lot more like an airplane. You can buy different tiers of wings and propulsion, as well as a couple of upgrades to the ramp that you use to get airborne in the first place. What’s nice is that you earn money for this shop every single time your bearded avatar takes a flight, successful or otherwise.
Hold your breath.
Unfortunately, the game’s objectives are its main stumbling point. The whole game takes place in one level, and you progress by reaching more and more distant landmarks. It’s a neat idea to see more of the same area as you get closer to completing the game, but a sense of exploration is really what makes a concept like that work. In this regard, Flapcraft is just too linear to be satisfying.
When you’re not reaching new parts of the map, you’re satisfying pretty uninteresting goals, like reaching a certain velocity or achieving a flight path of a certain shape. None of these arbitrary objectives hook into a story or any really satisfying sense of progression, leaving the player’s enjoyment of Flapcraft’s simple mechanics as the primary incentive to stay in the game.
Sadly, Flapcraft doesn’t have much variety, nor does it have the narrative charm of something like Fly Kiwi, Fly. If you’re looking for a rather stripped-down version of something like that, you’ll find it here. Otherwise, you should probably ignore it.