Diner Dash is for pansies. At least, that’s what 99Games, the developer behind Prison Mayhem HD, wants you to believe. They’ve taken the basic time management formula that made that beloved series so successful and applied it to the ruthless life of prison. And for the most part, it’s a winning formula.
If you’ve played one of these games, and there are more than enough knock-offs to go around, you’ve pretty much played them all. You’re given a handful of tasks that constantly need tending to, and only a set amount of time to complete them in. You must zip back and forth to make sure no one aspect becomes neglected, and you’re scored based on how well you do. You’ll also need to pass a certain threshold if you want to continue.
This ain’t Flo’s diner.
Prison Mayhem HD shirks bussing tables for preventing prison breaks, quelling fights, and ridding your prisons of contraband. It makes for a much more enthralling experience, because your actions seem to have more serious consequences, and the stakes are clearly higher than in general business management.
You take on the role of the prison guard Bluto, who is rebelling against his criminal family by making sure criminals stay off the streets and serve their prison terms in relative peace. To do this, you’ll have to run your prison efficiently and upgrade it with the latest tech. There are 30 levels in all, so there’s more than enough content to keep you coming back, although there are only three different prison types among those levels. Still, with 13 different activities to manage, the later stages get incredibly hectic.
Sounds like fun.
The game looks good, and playing on the iPad is easier than on the smaller iPhone screen, so we’re pleased that Prison Mayhem HD was developed for the larger tablet. Still, there is no denying that, despite the new coat of paint and scenario, this is the same game you’ve played time and again.
If you’re looking for a brand new experience, you’ve come to the wrong place. However, we appreciate that Prison Mayhem HD relocates the genre to the underbelly of society, especially with so many cutesy time management games on the market. Prison Mayhem HD won’t wow you, but unless you’re a hardened criminal, you’re likely to enjoy your stay.