The App Store has become a minefield of running games. Temple Run is the one of the biggest runners on the platform, and it is one of the first to cross my mind when tasked with naming them off at first thought. However, now we need to bring in Polara, Hope This Works Games newest title. A 2D auto-runner with glowing visuals, is it worth a spot on your iDevice or Android?
Polara’s story puts you in the shoes of Agent Lara, who has been given a color-changing suit to test out and soon after, she starts to rebel against whom she works for and starts looking for answers to her family, her past, and ultimately, who she really is. I didn’t really keep up with the story because it wasn’t very interesting. I swear I’ve heard a similar story elsewhere, possibly from a Twilight Zone episode. All of the art done for the game is extremely beautiful and pops off the screen, but the text dialogue does not do the game justice. I would have loved to have heard the lines delivered with voice acting, which also might’ve helped out the story somewhat. The graphics are strong, bold, and has a nice Metroid-esque feel to it. The music is exciting since it both keeps up with and fits very nicely with the on-screen action. If things slow down a bit for a cutscene, the music also slows down to fit the mood.
For controls, there are no on-screen buttons blocking the action. You change the suit from red to blue with a single tap of the left side of the screen, and a tap on the right side lets you jump. Polara’s tap controls are the most responsive I’ve seen in an iOS game in quite a while. You will have to use the suit’s colors to your advantage, such as if a laser is red, change the suit to red to avoid an uncertain end; if a launch pad is blue, change the suit blue to get high above the enemies. There are multiple good reasons to come back to Polara: 50 levels, boss fights, 6 unlockable endless modes, leaderboard support, and achievements. With all that comes with the title, Polara is well worth the price.
Polara has a story that might not keep your attention, but with strong, glowing visuals, addictive gameplay, exciting music, lots of stuff to do and unlock, along with the color-changing mechanic, it does stand as a refreshing twist on the runner genre. If Temple Run doesn’t get the job done for you, this is the running game that has to be on your mobile device! Polara is available on both the App Store and Google Play. Now please, bring on Polara 2!
Release date : 2012-10-11
Publisher : Hope This Works Games
Developer : Hope This Works Games
Gameplay : Platformer
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