I’m not a huge fan of neither freemium games nor movie tie-in games, and I’m fairly sure the first fact comes as no surprise to you, dear reader. I just don’t like the constant attempts of milking more and more money out of the player, while delivering an experience that is geared towards keeping you in the game for as long as possible. But sometimes even I get surprised at just how good free games, which can be described as “freemium”, can actually be.
Minion Rush was described to me as highly addictive, and I can definitely agree with that. I haven’t yet had the pleasure of watching the sequel to Despicable Me, but that hasn’t stopped me from being able to enjoy this game. The first sign of this is that the game is pretty well designed, if you ask me.
If you are familiar with the rather successful Temple Run games, you won’t have any trouble wrapping your head around Minion Rush. That is not to say that there aren’t any differences, because there are quite a few. The controls are pretty much standard, as you would expect from such a game, with a swiping gesture incorporated to move your character left or right, and to duck or jump.
I don’t remember bananas being of any special importance in the movie, but perhaps this has changed for Despicable Me 2. Either that or it’s just a MacGuffin that was chosen for this game. Not that it matters, as the bananas are the tokens you will keep collecting as you run around in the game. These can be traded for upgrades and character costumes in the obligatory in-game shop. Fear not, though, as the encouragements to make you part with your real life money are quite tolerable.
Every now and then you will be challenged to a fight by an evil character from the movies, which behave pretty much the same regardless of which character you are up against. It’s a bit of a letdown that you can just repeat the same strategy on all the characters, but I suppose they turned down the difficulty given the main anticipated market for the game; kids. Two of the characters I have no idea who they are, again, probably because I have only seen the first movie, but the third one is a familiar face.
As far as locations go, there are at the time of me writing this review, three different areas, and you can access them all in one run as long as you go in the right direction at the right time. Each area has its own particular challenges and unique looks, as well as one specific character to fight. Expect to get a minion overload in no-time, because they really are just about everywhere. Both where you expect and where you perhaps don’t.
There is a delightful level of details littered all over the game, and I constantly notice little things, clever nods of recognition aimed at the player, enhancing the experience overall. From the minions tirelessly toiling away in the background, performing maintenance, painting a wall, or taunting you as you speed past, to the sheer quality of the visuals in the different areas. Production quality is unusually high, which I appreciate a lot considering how cheap many movie tie-in games can be.
Despicable Me, was a lovely change of pace from what one might come to expect from an animated movie. Minion Rush is very much the same when it comes to both freemium and tie-in games on iOS. If you haven’t given it a go yet, I definitely think you should at least test it.
Brilliant design and aesthetics
Humorous and child friendly
Easy to learn
A bit repetitive
Minion Rush is an extremely addictive game, with great levels of attention to detail and easy to use gestures that make putting it down really difficult