Ivy the Kiwi?


VideoEG Expo: Yuji Naka talks Ivy the Kiwi?

Plays rock paper scissors with crowd.

VideoIvy The Kiwi? footage

A slice of gameplay.

Eurogamer Expo Sessions: Yuji Naka presents Ivy the Kiwi?

Sonic's dad talks up his other children.

Sonic creator's Ivy the Kiwi? arrives on iOS

Cheaper than the DS and Wii retail versions, but with only half the levels.

Sonic creator Yuji Naka's DS and Wii puzzle/platformer Ivy the Kiwi? has just arrived on iOS in both free and paid versions. The latter is currently on sale for £1.99 / $2.99, while it usually costs $4.99.

Ivy the Kiwi?

Ivy the Kiwi?


If the rumours are true, at the heart of Sonic the Hedgehog's creation was a desire to simplify things: Nintendo had laid out the template for platformers, and now SEGA was going to refine it. So where Mario used two buttons, Sonic would use only one. While the plumber liked to dawdle, the hedgehog, for the most part, preferred a breathless dash to the finish line.

If you're looking for any signs of the influence of Sonic's daddy Yuji Naka in his latest game, then, this sense of focus is perhaps the most likely candidate. Slow-paced and gently melancholic where Sonic was frantic and aggressively cheery, Ivy the Kiwi? is still an exercise in thoughtful economy: a platformer – of sorts – with almost no fat on the bone.

Ivy's a chubby little bird with rust-coloured feathers and an expression of fretful hope that wouldn't look out of place in a Schulz cartoon. Having spent the best part of a week with her, I can also confirm that she's utterly incapable of looking after herself, too.

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Eurogamer Expo Sessions: Yuji Naka presents Ivy the Kiwi?

Sonic's dad talks up his other children.

Yuji Naka is famous for being the lead programmer on the original Sonic the Hedgehog, which in videogame terms is a bit like a musician being famous for inventing percussion. How many platform game developers would be poor and destitute if they hadn't had this man's work to riff on for two decades?