Run Like Hell!

7 Overall Score
Gameplay: 7/10
Graphics: 7/10
Content: 8/10

Nice bright colors in backgrounds | Racing online opponents | Clever costume options

Can get hard to find a proper rhythm | Not enough gameplay variety | Repetitive native chants

Game Info

GAME NAME: Run Like Hell!

DEVELOPER(S): Mass Creation

PUBLISHER(S): Mass Creation

PLATFORM(S): Vita

GENRE(S): Arcade/Platformer

RELEASE DATE(S): September 16, 2014

So you accidently parked your boat on the complete opposite side of a tropical island full of cannibals.  How exactly are you supposed to get it back?  Well with your nerves in tatters when the conch shell shatters, you’d better run!  Run Like Hell! is the latest mobile phone game turned Vita game from developer & publisher Mass Creation.  As you can probably guess from the game’s title, it is an endless runner with a multitude of modes.  But is it any good or should we send it back to mother in a cardboard box?

screenshot_1

Run Like Hell! Vita is a combination of two different mobile games, combining the story mode, arcade mode, and online mode into one interface.  Story mode has you running through 33 stages as you jump & slide to get away from the natives.  These stages are split into different sections of the island, like the beach, jungle ruins, caverns, and the native village.  It’s nice to see some variety in the background, and each new section brings with it new challenges in jumping and sliding.  It takes a while to find the rhythm for when to jump short vs. long to minimize climbing time, so you can get frustrated quickly if you keep slowing down and getting BBQ’d.  Thankfully there are powerups to collect to fill that empty smile and hungry heart of yours.  Some of them, like the lightning bolt and cloud, slow down your pursuers, and others, like the adrenaline, allow you to add a boost of speed when needed.  These become invaluable in later stages when only a couple stumbles will turn you into dinner.  Thankfully the stages are quick to restart when you do get cooked, which helps in the “just one more go” mentality that all runners should have.  Once you reach the end of a section, you have to complete a rhythm level by tapping the shoulder buttons in time with an on-screen metronome-like bar.  The game doesn’t give you any warning that these sections are coming next, so it can be a little jarring to quickly find the flow you need to keep running.  While I do welcome the gameplay variety, I would have liked to see more of it.

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The next mode on offer is Arcade mode, which is the true endless runner.  Here you get procedurally generated levels in the location of your choice and you just keep going and going (and going) until you end up on the local menu.  This mode can also get addicting as you try to go a little farther than you did the last time and set personal & leaderboard high scores.  In addition to the settings you ran through in Story mode, you also get a bonus Yeti level from one of the mobile spinoffs.  The Online mode gives you a chance to race directly against others to move up the rankings in groups of two or four, or in an eight-person tournament.  In addition, you can complete online challenges to increase your rank.  Both Arcade mode & Online mode litter the stages with coins to collect that you can use to purchase additional costumes and powerups to use in the Online mode.  There are some pretty clever re-skin options available for purchase that garnered a hearty guffaw from me (but no Lost characters?!?!  Come on Mass Creation!).  The online modes are a good way to see how you measure up to other players, and if you can’t find a real live person, a handy bot will take its place, ensuring you’ll always have a chance to advance.  Arcade mode is also a great place to rack up stats to complete the various in-game challenges.  Stats are accumulated across all three modes, but you can pick the exact right locale in Arcade to jump over or slide under or smash what you need to earn the coins that come with the challenge completion.

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Visually, everything looks much better than its mobile counterpart.  The colors are nice and bright on the beach and appropriately subdued in other levels when they should be.   I also really liked how they made the screen get all tripped out when you run through the smoking native in the village.  The animations of the runners are decent enough, but nothing special.  The chants of the natives as they get close to you can get pretty annoying, as they just repeat the same 2-3 second clip over and over.  Besides that, the only other sounds (besides “yay you beat the level” fanfares) are bongo drums being endlessly pounded on in the background.  Nothing terrible, but nothing memorable either.

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THE RECOMMENDATION

Run Like Hell! is a decent little time waster that offers plenty to do.  It’s pretty much a side-scrolling Temple Run, just not quite as smooth or polished.  It doesn’t quite reach the high water mark set by others that have come before, but it can satisfy that itch in short bursts.  So if you fancy yourself a fan of the genre, you better make your face up in your favorite disguise and run.

 

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
Run Like Hell!
Author Rating
41star1star1star1stargray

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Author: Shaun Zimmerman View all posts by
Still waiting for the Commodore 128... Find me on Twitter @Zimm108