In the latest 1.1 release, the developers have added an easy mode. We complained that the difficulty ramped up a bit too quickly previously, and we feel that the new mode is good for people learning to play the game, although it feels a bit too easy. Helicopters and UFOs only take three taps to destroy in this mode instead of five, and you don’t have as many parachuters and moving ships on screen at once.
We feel like people who have been playing for a while won’t be interested in easy mode, although if you’ve been on the fence about buying the game it’s definitely a welcome addition. The developers claim that the next update will have online leaderboards, the ability to win back lives and two new bonus options. If that update ever comes out and delivers as promised, it would really improve the game. As it is, Parachute Panic is still a solid title that is now a little easier on newcomers.
This version of Parachute Panic really brings the goods! While we felt that the game was overly difficult originally, we felt that the added easy mode in version 1.1 was too easy to be any fun while the main game remained unchanged. Luckily, some tinkering with the original formula led the crew over at FDG to really get it right this time around.
The biggest change is the addition of the flying stork, which will award an additional life if bumped into. The ability to regain lives as you play makes the whole experience that much longer, and remedies the earlier problems of the game feeling like it was over too quickly.
Although you only have a maximum of five lives at the beginning of the game, as you increase your high score you’ll permanently unlock additional lives to a maximum of ten, allowing you to play that much longer.
All these tweaks are complemented by online leaderboards, which were sorely lacking in the prior versions of the game. All these changes make us happy to award Parachute Panic with the coveted Must Have rating of 4. If you haven’t tried it yet, now’s a good time!
Parachute Panic will quickly endear itself to casual and hardcore gamers alike with its quirky sense of humor, unique art style and straightforward gameplay. However, a few holes in its parachute made our interest drop just a bit too quickly.
The game starts with little stick figures fearlessly jumping out of planes, oblivious to the parachutes strapped to their backs. It’s up to you to deploy them before they fall to their deaths. It’s not that easy, though. It never is.
Watch that first step.
The skies are filled with helicopters that will dice your guys into little bits if you don’t eliminate them by tapping five times in rapid succession. Likewise, aliens will zoom in with little warning and beam your parachuters into spaceships unless you manage to kill them first.
The trickiest obstacle is the raincloud. These suckers will zap your parachuters into oblivion if they get near, and unlike the aliens and helicopters, they can’t be affected in any way. Oh, and did we mention that you’ll be landing on moving ships?
To give you a fighting chance, you can draw gusts of wind by swiping your finger across the screen. This allows you to guide the floating parachuters away from obstacles and onto the ships. If you fail to save five parachuters, the game is over. The first time you see eight floating stick figures, a helicopter and an alien ship onscreen at once you’ll quickly understand why they called this game Parachute Panic.
We found ourselves smashing our fingers all over the screen, trying to eradicate enemies while deploying parachutes and frantically drawing gusts of wind. Unfortunately, the difficulty ramps up a little too quickly for our liking, and the game is over before you know it. A more gradual difficulty curve would make the game far less frustrating and more enjoyable overall.
Luckily, the beatbox soundtrack (complete with an encouraging ‘game over’ ditty), sketchbook art and silly sense of humor keep things lighthearted, even after the most bitter of defeats. If the developer eases the difficulty curve and implements some much-needed online leaderboards, this could become a must have game. As it stands, Parachute Panic is a fun addition to the App Store that doesn’t quite live up to its full potential.