Game Reviews

Alto’s Adventure Review: Worthy visual treat

The finest mobile games offer a zen-like sense of happiness,

not a pessimistic bank account balance and a feeling of spiritual insolvency.

 Alto’s Adventure, a new game from Toronto’s Snowman studios,

unquestionably satisfies the soul,

thanks to an eye-catching flat graphic art with restrained parallax effects,

a stunning soundtrack and gameplay that’s simple to learn, demanding to master, and preferably suitable for long-term replayability.

Alto’s Adventure is also a one-time acquire of just $2, with no in-app purchases in sight, even though there’s an in-game currency mechanic used to unlock upgrades,

which for many other developers would present too alluring a cash cow to pass up.

Snowman co-founder Ryan Cash (not a wisecrack, just his real name) portrays that he and co-founder Jordan Rosenberg talked about using IAP and making the game free,

but eventually had to stay factual to themselves.

“We actually wanted to get back to old school gaming, where games were… games.”

They directed that with Alto’s Adventure, even though it’s a twist on the ‘endless runner’ type of games in which a player could hypothetically go on forever thanks to a frequently generated,

uneven background, obstruction, and interactive feature medium.

Players take on the role of Alto, a snowboarding llama shepherd who must slice to save his flock, all the while pulling off easy tricks to rack up points, and avoiding obstructions like rocks and chasms along the way.

Players manage the game by tapping the screen to bound over hazards or to clutch some air so they can pull off tricks by holding down on the screen or pulverizing wires strung between poles.

A few power-ups are dotted all through the landscape, along with coins that can undo permanent gameplay boosts.

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One of the game’s top strengths is that it doesn’t go out of its way to fling in extra features and technicalities to wrap your head around, which helps add to its zen-inducing consequence.

The game’s simple gameplay belies the rather roundabout path that led to its formation.

Cash and Rosenberg had grown up together and enjoyed innumerable hours playing games like Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater and Amped in their salad days,

but gaming fell by the wayside when the two penetrated the working world.

And while Cash ended up serving to make apps for Macs, and later iPhone and iPad at the Market circle, the focal point was on business and efficiency software, not play.

Even when Snowman first got happening, it was not a game that encouraged the two to leave their individual jobs and link forces.

Cash and Rosenberg had discussed making an app in the past but were enthused by the numerous steps necessary in setting up location-based reminders in Apple’s then-new Reminders app to try to make incredible better.

They established Snowman in April of 2012 and built Checkmark, an app designed to generate location-based reminders in just three taps.

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They’d commenced work on a useful app to pursue their first creation when the app’s designer pointed out that it bore more than a passing similarity to the 80s children’s game Simon, so they shifted approach and built a mobile version of that for iOS in its place.

After receiving admire, counting assortment as a Starbucks Pick of the Week,

they crooked their focus towards structure “something bigger – something we were truly zealous about,” says Cash.

The duo joined in the love of snowboarding and was displeased with the obtainable attempts to detain the sport on mobile.

They were also enthused by Tiny Wings, which Rosenberg had downloaded and become fanatical with,

ultimately passing his mania on to Cash as well.

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The concluding part for Alto’s Adventure came from Cash’s recollection of Harry Nesbitt’s work,

founded on what he’d seen from the avatars Nesbitt formed for the Realmac team for use on their website.

That art style combined with Cash and Rosenberg’s wish for a precise

understanding of a real snowboarding experience, and the instance set by Tiny Wings, joint in the Alto’s Adventure project,

which began in January of 2013 and concluded with the title’s discharge this past week.

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