Mobile Monday – Fruit Roll HD, King of Frogs, Flick Hoops, Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Puzzle

by on September 26, 2011

This week we’ve got some slightly lesser known games for you to have a try at. Fruit Roll HD is an iPad game with some of the most simplistic controls a game could possibly have, just tap the screen and that’s it, what can be complicated about that? King of Frogs is an addictive little puzzle game that is insanely difficult, in a mostly good way. Flick Hoops is a an iPhone game that will let you get some of that work stress out by letting you throw balls into a basketball hoop, just like you’ve been doing for years with a paper bin and crumpled balls of paper. Sink the basket and save the world at the same time! Lastly, we’ve got Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Puzzle, another jigsaw puzzle game for the iPad aimed towards children; colourful characters, a fun storyline and big puzzle pieces – a great combination.

Mobile Monday is here! Have a week!

Titles are available on iPhone and iPad unless specifically stated otherwise. If you like what you read, click the small black “App Store” button to load iTunes up and purchase the title!


There are games that are developed that are so insanely simple to play that they’re addictive for no real reason. There are a few of them out there now, Angry Birds, Doodle Jump, etc, we pick them up intending to just “see what they’re like” and suddenly end up looking up from our devices only to find that entire hours have passed without us noticing it. Since I doubt these games have the ability to shape time to their will I’m going to guess that their addictive nature is the cause, and that’s where MoboTap Games and their new game Fruit Roll HD comes in, an insane little side scrolling game that hopes to hook you in and not let go.

Just as the name would suggest, Fruit Roll HD tasks the player with rolling a piece of fruit down an incline at ever increasing speeds, avoiding obstacles that may litter their path by jumping over them. Players can also collect bananas along their way to help increase their score even faster, but this isn’t absolutely necessary.

Along the way there are different kinds of fruit, each of which can be used to change the type of fruit that you’re in control of, a red fruit will destroy a red enemy, a yellow fruit will destroy a yellow enemy and so on. If the player manages to collect three of the same type of fruit they will grow to an enormous size and practically trample their way to the end of the stage. This leads to the strategy of deciding whether you should use a fruit from the selection you have or wait to collect all three of them. It’s this slight strategic element that keeps the game fresh and mildly addictive.


Keep rollin’, rollin’, rollin’…

As I briefly mentioned earlier, the controls for Fruit Roll HD are extremely simple. All the player has to do is tap the screen when they want the piece of fruit they’re controlling to jump, with the difficulty lying in figuring out when to jump in order to minimise the chance of losing the game. The only other thing the player has to concentrate on doing while playing the game is tapping the fruit icons that appear on the left hand side of the screen. Doing so will change the fruit they’re controlling into something else, allowing them to destroy certain enemies they may come across.

Fruit Roll HD is quite simple in terms of its art style, just as it is in every other aspect of the game, there’s a slight drawn style to each of the sprites which is a little visually appealing but ultimately doesn’t do anything particularly special. All of the different fruit colours are easy to distinguish between and all of the enemies that they affect are ok but, at the end of the day, Fruit Roll HD is a game that you’ll be playing for its addictive nature, not its artwork.

Fruit Roll HD is an addictive little game that doesn’t look too appealing on the first go, but after.you’ve started playing you’ll find it as difficult to put down as some of those more popular games. You may not play it for months upon months trying to beat your score again and again but the time you do spend with the game will be enjoyable. The slight strategic element coupled with the kinetic energy of the title ensures that Fruit Roll HD is an entertaining game, even if it doesn’t have long lasting appeal. Fruit Roll HD - Chillingo Ltd



Puzzle games are probably amongst one of the most popular type of games on the iOS devices, some of them fall into the “easy to learn, difficult to master” category and some of them are just downright hard to play if you haven’t got your head screwed on tight enough; King of Frogs is the latter. Developed by Thomas Meyer, King of Frogs is a puzzle game where all you have to do is get the King to the designated lily pad, sounds simple right? Wrong! There are many obstacles in the way to make what would usually be a simple task much more difficult. If you’re anything like me you’ll be tearing your hair out trying to figure a level out only to suddenly see the solution appear before your eyes; which is sometimes even more frustrating than the puzzle itself.

As I mentioned, the gameplay in King of Frogs requires that the player simply gets the King to the designated lily pad, which sounds simple enough. Most people will start to get complacent at that point, feeling a sense of “well I can do that” wash over them; then they play the first level. The main puzzle element lies in the fact that the King has to jump over another frog in order to move, as do the other frogs, meaning that your main objective in each of the levels is to position the frogs in such a way that the King can reach the goal. Even that doesn’t sound like it makes it more difficult, however, add to that the fact the once you jump over a frog (one that’s not the King at least), that frog disappears and you’ll soon start to see how things can get very difficult, very quickly. All this adds up to only a single solution to each puzzle (in most cases) and, especially in the later levels, this single solution can take quite a while to find.


So many frogs and not one of them said “Bud”, “Weis” or “Er”!

The visuals of King of Frogs is probably the area of the game that lets it down the most, all of the images are very static, only really moving when the player chooses where they want them to move to, and even then the animations aren’t of a quality that a lot of people have come to expect from their iOS games. Still, it’s not that bad and the gameplay more than makes up for the lack of visual stimulus but the fact of the matter is that it lets the whole game down a little bit. The other downside to the visuals of King of Frogs is that it’s of a lower resolution than we’ve come to expect. We’ve been spoiled recently, especially since the iPad and iPhone 4 came out, with iOS games that are high definition and look crisp and clear on our displays. King of Frogs isn’t one of those games. Each of the images that make up the game look very pixellated, as do the backgrounds.

The simplistic controls coupled with the strangely addictive nature of the puzzles themselves make King of Frogs a game that everybody should at least check out, especially considering that (at least at the moment) it will cost you absolutely nothing. There are plenty of levels to keep you occupied if you discover that you enjoy the game and if, for whatever reason, you decide that you don’t like it, you haven’t lost anything.The puzzles can sometimes be a little bit unforgiving and the ability to get a hint when you find yourself REALLY stuck would have been nice but it’s still a well presented little game that encourages a little bit of outside-the-box thinking, giving you a great sense of satisfaction when you manage to complete a level. King of Frogs - Playlithium


We’ve all probably done it, been bored at home or work, set up some kind of container a few feet away and proceeded to throw bits of screwed up paper towards it in an attempt to get it in. We generally call it basketball, although it looks nothing like it. Thanks to Battery Acid Games we no longer need to be a menace to the greenery of the world by disposing of perfectly good pieces of paper as a form of entertainment. We can do something very similar on our iOS devices with Flick Hoops, a game that simply asks the player to score as many baskets as possible within the set time limit; who could’ve asked for more than that?

The gameplay in Flick Hoops plays exactly how you would expect with a name like that, you’re presented with a screen that just has a basket and a fan on it. The basket is (obviously) where you’re supposed to throw the balls in order to score points and the fan as the part of the game that makes things difficult. The fan either blows or sucks air at a random strength and direction on each throw, players will have to adjust the direction of their throw accordingly to compensate for the change in wind direction. This makes it so that the player can’t just “figure out” the way to make a perfect shot, they’ve got to be constantly thinking and constantly adjusting. This makes the game rather difficult, especially for new players.


Now there needs to be a game where I can practice throwing it behind me into the basket

As I mentioned earlier, the visuals in Flick Hoops are extremely simple consisting of a menu system and, once you’re in the game, an image of a basketball setup. While the game itself is only simple, asking players to throw a ball through a hoop as many times in succession as possible, some graphics with a little more complexity would have made the whole package look a lot better, as it stands at the moment, while the gameplay is there, the visuals aren’t and that may turn off a few people that have grown accustomed to iOS games with high definition graphics and a high production value; Flick Hoops has none of these things.

As with the visuals, the controls of Flick Hoops are very simple. All the player has to do to launch the ball towards the basket is touch the screen, somewhere towards the bottom, and then swipe their finger up. The speed at which they swipe will determine the speed of the ball and the direction, and whether it’s straight forward or a little to the left or right to try and compensate for wind strength and direction will determine the trajectory of the ball. Flick Hoops is definitely one of those games that look easy upon first lance but as soon as you start playing it, you’ll realise that there’s more finesse to the controls than most people were expecting.

All things considered Flick Hoops is a fun little game that a lot of people will be able to spend a few minutes at a time playing, it’s not really a game that can be played for extended periods of time but that’s not the point of the game. It’s for those times when you’ve got 5 minutes to kill waiting for a bus or standing in a queue, or for competing with friends to see who can get the highest score. If you’re looking for something you can spend a few hours playing then Flick Hoops isn’t the game for you, however, if you enjoy the classic game of throwing paper into a bin when you’re bored at work then go ahead and download, at least you’re saving the planet. Flick Hoops - Battery Acid Games



There aren’t many games for the iOS devices that feel like they’re directed squarely at children, and young children at that, which is a shame because the size of the iPad, coupled with how you’re meant to interact with it means that it’s perfect for younger hand, hands that just want to touch and play with everything they see.

The developers behind the jigsaw puzzle game Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest clearly see this and in response they’ve created a bright, colourful, game with lots of storytelling elements and puzzle pieces that are large enough, and simple enough, to be manipulated by even the smallest of hands as long as they’re able to ascertain what they’re supposed to be doing.

The gameplay in Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest involves placing the puzzle pieces that you’re given in the correct place in order to progress to the next puzzle and, as such, the next part of the storyline. As the puzzle continue they get progressively harder but the increase is only very slight per puzzle, this means that there shouldn’t be a point where it’s too difficult to play for younger puzzle players, at least not with a little help from their parents at least.

The nice part about the storyline with Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest is that by solving the puzzle you’re actually progressing the story, where other game would ask you to solve the puzzle then tell you the next part of the story, here the puzzle IS the next part of the story. This gives the player a feeling of involvement with the story and is part of the main reason why such a simple game is fun for all ages.


I just can’t figure out where this one goes!

The visuals in Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest look quite good. On a technical level they’re not as impressive as some other games on the device but for this style of game they serve their purpose. The entire game is made up of pre-rendered stills of the title character in various situations. This means that not much processing power is needed in order to render the graphics, so the game plays very smoothly as a result. Moving character aren’t as important in a game aimed so clearly at children, they’re going to invent their own movements and animations in their minds anyway, so the game just stays out of their way and leaves them to it; which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. To parents it may look a little static and uninteresting but children, with their wild and vivid imaginations, are going to have a field day.

Along with the visuals, the controls in Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest couldn’t be simpler, all players have to do in order to position a piece of the puzzle is drag it with their finger. The pieces are usually so big that the problem that was occurring with Join-It a few weeks ago, where the puzzle piece would be underneath the player’s finger so it was difficult to place correctly, doesn’t occur. The only strange point that came across while playing Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest was the fact the the start button needed to be pressed twice in order to progress from one puzzle to the next. This seemed like an odd choice and on more than one occasion, I’d press the ‘Next’ icon a single time and spend the next minute or so wondering “is it loading?” before remembering that I had to press it a second time.

Overall, Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest is a great little jigsaw puzzle game for children and their parents; or even just anybody that enjoys a charming little puzzle game. The colourful images and the simple gameplay and controls ensures that even the smallest hands will be able to have a go and even if someone else ends up helping them solve the puzzle, they’re going to enjoy the subsequent story that’s spoken out loud to them using high quality voice over work.

If you’ve got kids, and you want to help develop their puzzle solving skills whilst giving them some decent storytelling at the same time then you’d do well to get Captain Squiddy’s Jigsaw Quest right now! Captain Squiddy's Jigsaw Quest - Captain Squiddy