There are a number of iPhone games that use music as a backdrop for game play. Tapulous’ popular Tap Tap Revenge series immediately comes to mind. The thing about games like Tap Tap Revenge is that they require you to buy content to play with which, on an iPhone full of music, might seem like a needless expense. The upcoming game Tune Runner from Appy Entertainment takes a more revolutionary path, using your existing music library as the in-game content.
In Tune Runner, the player must make their way through various environments by drawing the shapes that move from right to left on the screen. Successfully draw the shape through touch on the screen and your robot Grov-ee continues on his journey, unsuccessfully draw the shape and your robot loses a little bit of his life. If you miss enough shapes your life meter drains and your mission is over. As I alluded to in the beginning though, Tune Runner’s revolutionary aspect is in the creation of the game environment. Tune Runner scans the music on your iPhone and for each level played you select a song. The game then generates the level dynamically based on that song. Every level is different, no two plays are ever the same. Even two plays on the same song are different.
Tune Runner for iPhone also implements some nice extras in addition to the solid game play. Tune Runner implements full OpenFeint support with global high scores and achievements. Additionally, after you complete a song, your score is submitted against all other scores for that song. This is an interesting twist on social gaming since usually overall global high score is usually king.
The other interesting extra is how game play and game price are connected. Instead of pasting banner ads to every empty space in the application or charging more for the game, Tune Runner takes another approach. Each new game is allotted a certain number of plays of the game. To earn more plays of the game the user can either purchase them or earn them the Recharge mini-game. Purchasing them is a straightforward proposition. The Recharge mini-game is a little bit more interesting. Play is the same as the main game but instead of Grov-ee, a battery is displayed. Each shape that is successfully drawn places a bit more energy in the battery. When the battery reaches full charge an additional play is earned. To subsidize this, banner ads are displayed during the Recharge mini-game which is a small price to pay for this fun little mini-game and additional plays of the game.
I look forward to playing the final version of Tune Runner. It looks to be an innovative game with a fun and interesting interface. I think Appy has a winner on its hands.
Previewed By: Erin Peterson