Summary:6 minigames in one app that are surprisingly addicting despite their challenging premises. Great for adults with a guilty pleasure for cutesy games, and overall just plain fun.
Sometimes when the day is long, and I’ve been cracking my knuckles, rolling my head from side to side, and staring at the clock, waiting in agony, in impatient agony, for the day to be over and for me to return, restlessly, to my humble cottage with its plush white duvet, whitewashed walls and pillows in all shapes and sizes, I don’t want to read, my brain completely spent, and I certainly do not want to complete that long list of chores I keep neatly tacked on the refrigerator, those inked words of responsibility staring back at me coldly, still unchecked. Mostly, I want to vegetate, to settle like mashed potatoes on the couch and watch some mindless, gossipy TV series by the name of One Tree Hill, or else play endless rounds of some mindless video game like Pac-Man, Bubble Bobble, or StoneLoops of Jurassica.
Thankfully, it seems one developer read my mind. Okay Games knows that simple, cutesy, repetitive games are big winners among all age groups (small kids that giggle and laugh uproariously at wee little lions flying, and mid-life adults wanting escapism and childish reversions). They recently released Zoo Olympics seemingly with me in mind, as it contains not just one, but six games rolled into one app. I know, fantastic, right? 6 games for the price of one. Of course, try it out knowing that each game entails simple tasks, like jumping from one platform to the next, without any special rounds, bonus points, or any further complexity other than what’s at face value. So, this isn’t like some double feature for the movies. Actually, it reminds me of what my boyfriend’s dad likes to say, regarding his horde of Chihuahuas (he has five): “It’s like having one big dog.” Hmmm, really? Because it’s kind of like having 5 small dogs. Okay, so maybe that doesn’t really prove my point about Zoo Olympics, but it comes close.
The six minigames are all surprisingly fun, and their difficulty increases progressively – meat falling faster, jumping platforms getting increasingly smaller. Falling meat? The games you have to choose from are Sea Escape, Lion Ball, Enjoy Flying, Memory Card, Jumping High, and lastly, Eat Meat, my favorite. Eat Meat entails your lion character running back and forth across the scene, trying to catch falling pieces of meat in his basket. Juicy thighs and whole chickens fall gracefully from the sky, increasing in speed the more you catch. Avoid at all costs the falling bombs, which plunder the whole screen alongside the tasty meat treats your lion craves. Your lion certainly does not appreciate being blown up into a grayer, shrapnel-dusted version of himself. The controls to move your lion aren’t intuitive at all, and Mr. Lion will often get stuck along one side of the screen, or go in the opposite direction you wish him to go, so expect to see a dizzying array of meat rain past you and not in your basket.
Sea Escape is probably the most difficult, and the most annoying, if you, like me, are the competitive type, and rage whenever you see your submarine explode in a seemingly unavoidable cross-collision with tiny black specks otherwise known as bombs. A small controller on the lower right is easily used with your thumb, and the movement proves to be very natural – a good thing, since your underwater lion needs all the help he can get in avoiding the bombs hurtling toward him, faster and faster, from all angles. Go ahead. Last longer than 20 seconds. I dare you.
If you need a break from exploding and from blaming your cute lion character, you can move on to the Memory Card game. It’s easy, breezy, and altogether suitable for the semi-conscious senior citizen. Like any memory game – you played as a kid, right? I hope so, otherwise you might actually suck at this game – you must flip two cards over and remember their positions so when you encounter a matching pair, you can flip them over. Yay! A matching pair! Now on to all the others. Apple trees, elephants, paw prints, and your ever present lion character adorn the card’s pictures. The game is over almost as soon as it begins, but I find it pretty addicting – I’m always trying to improve my skill and dexterity, and this game does a good job at testing me in that department.
The other games, Lion Ball, Enjoy Flying, and Jumping High are similarly simple games that test your patience, and prove to be highly entertaining. Lion Ball is quite fun, bouncing a ball around with your finger to shoot into a lion mouth basket that opens and closes. Each bounce increases the numeric value of your ball, so refrain from immediately bouncing the ball into the lion’s mouth for your lions share of the points. Jumping High has your lion timing your jumps from platform to platform, and Enjoy Flying has your lion dressed in a cape, flying to avoid impending obstacles that increasingly go by faster and faster.
Even though I enjoy Zoo Olympics, with its cute graphics and simple but fun games, I can’t help but feel I’m willingly playing a 4 year old’s game. The interface, the animations, the objectives, and the games themselves remind me of those Nintendo DS games meant for little girls, like Barbie Horse Adventures: Riding Camp or Bella Sara or even the sappy titled Let’s Ride: Friends Forever. The games no self-respecting teenager, let alone adult, would be caught playing (disregarding the question, of course, how I even know about Barbie Horse Adventures *tugs collar embarr1assingly*). To test my theory on the childishness of these games, I had my boyfriend, Ocie, tinker with them, and after seeing the expression of pure, daft delight seep across face, I knew I had a winner. So, aside from adults with guilty pleasures for cutesy, playful games, Zoo Olympics is a fantastic buy for the young child with dexterous fingers and a crafty mind.
If you feel like trying out Zoo Olympics for free, Okay Games has generously provided our Appstruck readers with several promotion codes. Make sure to nab one before they’re all gone!
*When using the promotion code to download for free, it’s on a first-come, first-served basis. Out of courtesy, please leave a comment below mentioning you’ve used the promotion code.