The first time I spied the name of this Android game in a comment, I thought it was all about doodling and making something jump with the help of scrawls on the screen. Somewhat like Chalk Ball Lite which I reviewed a few weeks back. Funny, addictive, frustrating, simple, and a few more adjectives were thrown around quite extravagantly. I was wrong; they weren’t.
Doodle Jump for Android has nothing to do with doodling. But yes, it deserves the adjectives and a few more. What’s more, those comments, and the very fact that it is mentioned on our Best Android Games page (and also the Best iPhone Games page). My friend, Dave also mentions it glowingly in 7 Endless Running And Jumping Games You Need On Your Device [iOS]. So, to put the brouhaha to the test, I downloaded it (after paying $0.99), and started my jumping.
The Best Kind of Addiction for $0.99
Where can you have so much of fun for just under a dollar! No, not even in a carnival ride. The only place in town these days that’s always open is the Google Play Store. Not only that, Doodle Jump happens to be a “classic” game if you go by its relatively “old” launch date of 2009. It is available on nine platforms, and its popularity on iTunes started the word of mouth mentions. 10 million sold games on the Android and iOS platforms gives it a few bragging rights over more complicated games.
Say Hello to “The Doodler”
The Doodler is a four-legged creature who jumps around from platform to platform in his journey to the top. He is aided by – or let’s say, propelled – various objects like springs, jetpacks, trampolines, propeller hats, and rockets (the best). The objective is simple – keep jumping and just don’t fall down. The player has to move his Android set sideways to the left and right so as to use the accelerometer and make the Doodler jump around from platform to platform.
The antagonists depend on the theme. For instance, they can be monsters or UFO’s. But the primary villain is gravity itself and it’s your job to defeat it by making the device move. The ultimate enemy is the black hole.
The Doodler (i.e. you) can run away from the baddies by jumping, shooting them with nose balls, or perish to their wiles. Shooting is performed by simply tapping on the screen and aiming with the Doodler’s ‘snouty’ nose. The shooting mode can be changed from the game’s setting.
Doodle Jump has four themes in the Android version (and now four new ones) which changes a few of the game dynamics like the projectiles Doodler fires, the enemies, and the general environment of course. The Android version includes themes like Original (the default), Christmas, Halloween, Rainforest, and Space. You can change them by swiping on the main screen.
The Game with No End
Doodle Jump has no end. You can keep The Doodler jumping around till it falls down into the great blackhole, gets eaten by a monster, or falls to one of the baddies. To get an idea of high scores, you can go to the leaderboard and check out the elite as well as type in your name to see where you stand. Scores and stats on the game screen also tells you how you are faring. For instance, when you play the Local Challenge, you can see the names whizzing by as you jump higher and higher to collect points:
Jumping to conclusions
There has to be a reason for the game’s abiding popularity. It’s the surface simplicity and the actual gameplay complexity. Tilting the device to Doodler in motion and action is a tougher job than I anticipated. I found it much easier to stand and play it, rather than sit or lie down. It is a very fast paced game. The fact that there’s no logical end apart from your previous high score, makes the game a challenge in itself. The Local Challenge mode is nice if you want to go up against a friend or a group of friends. There are worse ways to win a bet. I can tell you that.
If I had to just nitpick for a second, I would say that the game doesn’t let me alternate between portrait and landscape modes. You can only orient the cell in one direction. On smaller screens, it is very difficult to control the jumps. Apart from that, I am not arguing with 10 million (and counting) downloads.
Try Doodle Jump for Android and jump to your own conclusions…or not.
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