Mobile Games Roundup • Page 3

Hector! Rogue! Bounder! Jetpack! Contre!

Contre Jour

How many of you initially wrote off Cut The Rope as another throwaway piece of populist trash, only to play it and realise that it's actually a hardcore puzzler in cutesy clothes? Probably quite a few, I'd wager.

Mokus, meanwhile, pulls the opposite trick by dressing Contre Jour up in dark, mysterious arthouse threads and creates a cloying, enigmatic ambience. But behind the beautiful inky monochrome and dense soundtrack, its mechanics bear more than a passing resemblance to Zeptolab's hugely popular effort.

Much like Cut The Rope, the focus is on creating safe passage for an object - in this case a disembodied eyeball - and trying to collect up to three stars en route to the goal.

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World of view.

Getting there involves squishing up the ground beneath the eyeball with your fingers, as well as attaching and manipulating tendrils that help swing it across to its next destination. Later, such mechanics become embellished with slingshots, pulleys and blowers as the goal becomes increasingly elusive.

With 60 levels offering hours of patient probing, it's another impossibly good-value offering. It's hard not to sound like a stuck record when so many quality offerings keep crawling out of the woodwork every week, but Contre Jour deserves to be loved.

8/10

Bounder's World

  • iPhone: 0.69
  • iPad: 1.49

Roaring onstage to the strains of Survivor comes Bounder, one of the most unlikely forgotten heroes to re-emerge in recent times.

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Go ahead and jump.

Without wishing to come across like a grizzled veteran screaming "You had to be there, man!" the original Bounder scooped a prestigious Zzap 64! Gold Medal back in the day, when such things were all that mattered. As such, it was regarded with fondness - as much for its quirky originality as its effortless playability.

Then - as now - the idea was simply to safely guide a perpetually bouncing ball from one end of a precarious environment to the other. Viewed from a bird's-eye perspective, the journey was a perpetually fraught one with an unending stream of hazards designed to put a crimp in your day.

If you recall Gremlin's C64 original with any clarity, you'll know that it was unrelentingly tough and concerted progress was far from assured. These days, such attitudes have long been outlawed, and as such Bounder's World obligingly lets you romp through level after level without really breaking a sweat.

Dozens of levels of stress-free bouncing later, there's the dulling realisation that Urbanscan has failed to keep it interesting, and it takes far too long for new gameplay elements to appear or the for the difficulty to rise. It's also desperately bland and characterless to look at, with ditties seemingly composed to disperse annoying children.

As comebacks go, Bounder's World never really gets out of first gear, and is a bit of a false start for Urbanscan's Gremlin reboot project. Maybe it's keeping the powder dry for Monty Mole...

5/10

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