Springa - Gorgeous Pixel Art, Addicting Soundtrack, and a Carrot Chasing Astronaut
Springa is a casual mobile game with great art style and a soundtrack that puts me in a trance-like state. Morgondag created a simple and well polished platformer. For what the game may lack depth, it makes up for in replay ability.
After the game quickly loads up, your ear drums get struck with some of the best chip-tunes I've heard on the mobile platform. The soundtrack is credited entirely to one of the two devs at Morgondag, Kim Gunnarsson. He single-handedly left me no choice other than to pause for stretches at a time, solely to relish in the looped tracks. Heck, I'm doing that right now as I construct this review.
The music greatly fits the atmosphere of the game as well. There are tense moments as you tap to hop, skip, and jump across each platform. While attempting to greedily grab coins along the way, you'll find a spaceship awaiting your arrival. The tense moments remind me a bit of retro console games. Franchises like Mario and Sonic come to mind, especially when you grab the various coins strown about. With every coin you touch, you hear a very familiar 'ching' as you sprint over them.
In some worlds you may only find one coin, or you may find upwards of 50 on each attempt. The levels are not distributed in a traditional sense. Each and every time you complete a level you fly to another randomly selected world next. There are eight worlds/themes, with a total of 40 playable levels:
- Outer Space
- Candy World
- Rainbow World
- Construction Site
Your time spent in Springa will improve your ability on well-timed jumps and coin collecting. The overall goal is to see how many worlds you can consecutively complete without falling to your demise. As you continue your winning streak and collect all the coins, you're awarded with extra currency and points at the end of each stage.
In the game, you play as an astronaut who has a carrot tied to his helmet. Yes, you are literally chasing a dangling carrot. I found the dangling carrot quite hilarious, and an ingenious way to give reason why this astronaut keeps running.
You are an astronaut racing from one end of a world to the next. That can change depending on how much time you spend playing the game. The coins you collect are to buy the three alternate costumes. The only one I've been able to unlock thus far is the super hero outfit, though it looks more akin to a ninja - I'm quite happy either way.
I'm more than eager to play the game over and over, and feel rewarded for doing so. There are no in-game purchases; so all outfits are earned, not bought. On that note, the amount of time I suspect required to invest for those items might seem a bit steep, regardless of replay value.
I found myself in the mindset of having to grind just to see the other outfits. Don't get me wrong, I don't like pay to win, but I don't like being expected to sink 10-plus hours just for aesthetic character changes in a casual mobile game. I did find at times my eyes would shift focus from the characters outfit to the background due to such similar color palettes.
This however, did not affect my gameplay. Being distracted by the various pixellated backgrounds really was a highlight for me. From the vibrant colors of the city to the barren icy tundras, each were beautifully crafted.
In the casual game market, there are a ton of options. Morgondag, has created a game that is simple, beautiful, and addicting. As you hectically jump from platform to platform, the pixellated visuals never cease to appease my eyes. For only a dollar, this is a must for anyone who's got a soft spot for retro gaming and a good soundtrack.