Cut the Rope

Cut the Rope
Cut the Rope Cover
Platforms Android, iOS
Genre Sweet puzzler
Score 9  Clock score of 9
Buy from Amazon

I apologize for writing more about mobile games lately than general mainstream console titles. I’m in the middle of moving and sitting down for 15 minutes with Hot Springs Story, Angry Birds, or Cut the Rope is a lot easier than an hour or two with Dragon Age II.

So I’ve been tearing through a series of cheap or free games on the Android, taking advantage of Amazon’s free app of the day and sales on the Market. The great thing about mobile games, even over DS titles, is that they’re so darn cheap, if you don’t like the game, delete it and move on. While I could write a few paragraphs on a game I only gave 15 minutes then promptly deleted, I’d rather focus my energy on games I really enjoyed and believe are worth even their minor asking price.

Cut the Rope recently landed on the Android platform after a successful run on Apple’s iOS, and after first hitting the indie market GetJar for free (supported by ads), it is now on the official Market and Amazon ad-free for a dollar. Here’s my review of Cut the Rope on Android.

With the huge success of Angry Birds, other developers have smartly copied its short, bursty gameplay that allows for quick rounds of gaming even in an elevator ride. Cut the Rope isn’t as frantic or random as Angry Birds, but keeps the rapid levels and charm that made the Rovio games so big.

In Cut the Rope, you, you know, cut the rope. No, this isn’t as basic or meta as You Have to Burn the Rope, but it is the basis of this mobile puzzle game. The goal of each stage is to feed Om-Nom a piece of candy. The small, round sweet is usually dangling from a rope that can be swung around to be launched into Om-Nom’s mouth, finishing the stage.

Feeding Om-Nom is typically incredibly simple, even the the final stages in the game can be finished with little effort, but each level is littered with three golden stars that create the real goal. Nabbing the stars is challenging and fun, and nowhere near as frustrating as three-starring stages in Angry Birds.

cut the Rope om nomAcross 175 stages (apparently at least another 25 are on their way) spread across seven stages with a new gameplay element introduced in each one, Cut the Rope keeps you on your toes and has you racking your brain trying to figure out how to grab all the stars while still landing in Om-Nom’s mouth. About halfway through the levels you’ll also need to be pretty quick with your fingers to you pull off all the necessary moves. This provides an enjoyable combination of carefully thinking out your strategy for possibly minutes and then executing it in typically under 10 seconds.

The real hero in Cut the Rope is the physics and the new gameplay elements that are introduced to accompany it. The game begins with usually just a few swinging ropes, followed by Portal-like magic hat levels, and gravity bending final stages. The variety is excellent and the different techniques never feels stale, even across nearly 200 stages. Cutting the rope and unleashing the piece of candy always has a natural feel to it, the physics of the real world have been carefully translated to the small screen while still keeping it fun.

My one complaint is that the game is almost too easy at times. Collecting three stars in every level isn’t that hard, and there’s maybe a dozen stages that really stand out as difficult. There is a point system that is based on your speediness, but that is something that has really never interested me. My suggestion is to add an invisible star to each level that would be challenging to reach even if you could see it.

Cut the Rope is an excellent deal at $1, and I highly recommend it to any smartphone user looking for something different from Angry Birds. The 175 stages will keep you busy for hours, but never push you to headache inducing levels of frustration, for better or worse. Now, go feed Om-Nom!

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