Saturday, December 14, 2013

Cupcakes vs Veggies (Game Review)

The underlying premise of this game is that sweet treats are good and vegetables are bad. Ardent vegetarians can sent protests of email to TreSensa, but even if you like vegetables, you might want to play this game because it is a great game for phones, and delivers perfectly for Firefox OS.

Here's the opening screen. You can see we're dealing with sugary treats!



You can choose to play, shop, look at your achievements, and get some tutoring. It is always a good idea to figure out how to play the game before you start (unless you just like to wing it -- some do and some don't. I usually like to bash away first and then see what I get).

The Help is excellent, with lots of fun and pictures. Here's the first Help screen:


What could be more simple than that. Eat cupcakes, don't eat veggies. And in fine print, it tells you that you need to click to eat. Well, we on Firefox OS don't click, we touch or tap. So bang on those cupcakes with your finger, and you'll need to tap fast! This is a very fast reaction type of game and would be a good way to wake up in the morning. And get good finger exercises all day long. And these cupcakes fly fast!

But TreSensa didn't want to make it dull. So they throw in perks you can get, as explained by this next screen:


For example, the Freeze snowflake will temporarily stop all the cupcakes so you can eat them easily. These things will fly through the air and if you're fast, you can catch 'em.

But if you're not fast and you need some help, they've got a plan just for you.


Eating cupcakes makes you rich! (And you thought it just went to your waistline.) You want to accumulate gold! Gold lets you buy ways to make things easier. And you can buy gold with real money!

Here's the exchange rate:



And here's what those tokens will cost you in real money: you can buy 10 tokens for $0.99, 50 tokens for $4.99, and 100 tokens for $9.99. And remember, each token is worth 10,000 gold. And what is it worth? Well, very early on, you can buy Freeze Flakes for 100 gold. And other items are priced accordingly.

So they can give away the game for free and let you buy your way to the top. Of course, you don't need to ever buy, because the real point of the game is to see how fast you can eat those cupcakes and NOT eat a vegetable.

Now that you're completely confused, here's what the game looks like:


A cupcake flies up from the bottom of the screen. You have to tap on it before it falls back down again.

Here's another.


The cupcakes fly fast and furious, but you must not ever click on a vegetable. If you do, you'll get a big YUCK. And if you don't get all the cupcakes, you'll get a big DON'T WASTE FOOD!

And at the end of each level, you get an update on where you are:


And something to keep in mind: "A dropped cupcake is a dad cupcake." One of the things that makes this game outstanding is the whacky sense of humor that comes through in the theme, the art, and even little slogans about sad cupcakes.

And as well as a sense of humor, there's a real challenge. This game makes you be on the alert every moment. Cupcakes look different, vegetables are not cupcakes, and various perks add up to a fast-paced game of speed and skill that will make you want to try again.

TreSensa also makes an HTML5 game engine and I'm curious how it works and compares to others. But their engine clearly works and these guys know how to put together an HTML5 game. The art is great, the play is flawless, and they have a sense of humor.

The game is hard, in the sense that you have to move fast, but there's a place for that in the game world. Some like it fast, some like it slow. I like this game and it delivers well on all fronts.

Maybe their next game will be made for vegetarians, and you must choose between brassicas and nightshades. But until then, this game will keep you occupied.

Cost: Free
Genre: Arcade
Score: 5 (out of 5)
Tested on: ZTE Open (Firefox OS)
Get it at: Firefox Marketplace