GAME Say goodbye to Angry Birds, as the flying disc goes digital
I t's game over for Angry Birds, Doodle Jump and Scrabble on iPad. Pack them in a corner of that virtual shelf, mates — Frisbee Forever is here! The throw-and-catch-in-the-wind flying disc is now digital, comes indoors, with a fun puzzle built around it. It's still “flung”, it's still Frisbee, but with 3D graphics that are vivid and bright.
The game is about steering a Frisbee left and right. Using the automatic speed and altitude, you have to make it through all of the hoops in the levels. Miss one, and you restart (don't mourn, you'll still ,.get stars for the effort). Punch buttons for steering, and use intuition for tilt controls.
Find your way
The impediments in the Frisbee path start with trees and fences, get complicated with Ferris wheels and fans that blow the Frisbee off-course, and reach looping tunnels and flying pigs. It dips in difficulty, slows, falls to the ground, and that's when you hit the boosters to raise the game. You'll want to get every star and earn every gold medal, so you keep going — just what the game-makers want you to do.
The game has 10 different environments, each with 10 levels. Each level gets you a bronze, silver or gold medal, plus stars that unlock new environments. With a catch: only three of the environments are easily un-lockable. For others, you need to buy stars with money or re-play levels for free stars.
Getting stars may be easy, but gold medals aren't handed to you in most levels. The game gets challenging enough to make you feel like an achiever when you grab the yellow metal. And there's no Game Centre Support.
Not winning? Help's around. It's a freemium game, and you can “purchase your progress”!
But watch out, you could end up a collectoholic, obsessively wanting all the items in the stores. Play an efficient game, and you don't need to spend real money to buy stuff.
Frisbee Forever is a free iPad, iPod Touch, iPhone app, with details that are fine and the frame rate, smooth. The music is folksy guitar, but then, you'll reach for the mute button after an hour of extended game play. You won't want any distraction. Get the message? Never give up!
It is programmed to discourage players from quitting. But, if you quit, how do you get hooked? “In what's called ‘self-levelling', the programme gently (and expertly) steers players between the boredom of ‘too easy' and the frustration of ‘too hard',” says techie Mahesh. “If your attention wanders because there's nothing much to conquer, you're thrown a challenging curve. If you keep crashing and are about to fling the iPad on the bed, you get a bone.”
An ardent gamer says that after playing Frisbee Forever, playing real-life Frisbee doesn't seem as fun anymore.
However, Manu Karan, who was part of the recently concluded fourth edition Ultimate Frisbee tournament isn't buying the argument that FF is a substitute for the real thing. “Running behind a floating Frisbee and catching it — that is exhilarating, as is the fresh air in your face!” he says. “There's team bonding, getting to know people. There's personal interaction, verbal / non-verbal communication. The idea is to get away from gadgets, and into real open spaces.”
So, when you can't toss the real thing on the beach, give the virtual one a try!