Unpleasant Horse is Pop Cap’s first release under it’s new 4th and Battery Label. According to the description in the App Store, the game is a result of a “game jam” where employees drew a game description from a hat and then had 24 hours to make a game. The name that was randomly drawn was “unpleasant horse racing through the sky” and the game they came up with is fantastic.
Unpleasant horse is a point-based side-scroller where you play as a black horse that spends his time jumping from cloud to cloud. If you miss a cloud you land in a meat grinder and it’s game over for you. There are also birds flying around (like birds do), if you hit a bird you not only get points but you gain the ability to tap the screen once (per bird) to fly. You can have up to five flying power ups saved up. After that you still get points for hitting birds but your feather inventory will stay at five. The last object you can get points from are happy white horses. When you land on them you can ride them down to the grinders. This is where the real points are scored. As you get closer to the grinder the points keep going up, so killing little white ponies is the best way to build up your score!
Hey white horse! Mess with me and you go in the grinder!
There are also a few ways to get bonus points. The main way is to hit either birds or horses more than once in a row. There are also extra points rewarded for a last second getaway, all though if your score is getting high you probably wont even want to risk it. The last way to get extra points is doing a jump that is particularly long. I’m not sure how long it has to be, to be honest I’ve only done this a couple times myself.
My only complaint about Unpleasant Horse is that there is no Game Center integration. Because Unpleasant Horse is a point-based game, it’s more fun when you have other people’s scores to play against. It would be great to sign into Game Center and see which one of your friends has the highest score, and try to top them. Instead I had to resort to calling my friends with high score updates. Not to mention I may have friends playing it that I didn’t even realize even had the game. According to a recent tweet by 4th and Battery, Game Center support is in the works. Once this feature is added I can honestly say I will have nothing unpleasant to say about this game.
There are two versions of Unpleasant Horse available; an iPad version and an iPhone/iPod version. The iPad version is just a blown up version of the iPhone version with graphics enhanced to fit the larger screen. At first I found it odd that the iPad version wouldn’t try to fit more on the screen. It actually makes sense why both versions would be the same though. Part of the challenge of the game is not knowing what is off screen. If the iPad version had more on the screen it would give iPad users an advantage over others. Both versions of the game are incredibly addicting and very fun. Best of all, both versions are available for Free from the App Store!
Final Rating: 8/10 (easily changed to a 8.5/10 once game center support is added)
CBR Break Down:
Device Played On: iPhone 4 and iPad (1st generation)
Approximate Time to Completion: N/A – no ending
Price Bought at: Free
Current Price: Free
Recommend Purchase Price: Why pay more than free?