A capitalist mad scientist mouse has frozen a tropical avian paradise to boost his region’s tourism. Breaking free from your frozen prison using powers you gained as an egg when the stork accidentally dropped you into an active volcano, it’s up to you to overthrow corporatocracy and thaw your winged comrades. Can ex-Valve level and game designer Grégoire Cherlin make a successful iPhone game about birds, or is that simply out of the question?
Let’s just get it out of the way: Flyro’s story is pretty painful to take in, and the music on tap won’t stay unmuted for too long. Fortunately, Flyro is a precise, complete game that throws in the kitchen sink in order to keep things interesting. A top-down shooter with no guns, Flyro has you navigating your green protagonist through a myriad of obstacles using, you guessed it, your finger. Swiping left or right will allow you to avoid everything from electric fences to boxing gloves, and the controls never fail in their responsiveness.
Removing your finger is actually where the game gets interesting. No player input initiates your phoenix-esque powers, allowing you to blast through wooden walls and other obstacles. Flyro does a lot with the two mechanics it has. You’ll get bonuses for things like burning through the middle of a fence or the final coin in a chain, and like a Jetpack Joyrideexperience, Flyro will assign optional bonus objectives like “3 close calls with a mine” at the beginning of each round.
Aside from narrative and characterization, Flyro’s only real drawback is that what you see is what you get. This is an arcade-style, score-based game where your reward for successfully navigated obstacles is newer, more challenging obstacles. There’s no question though that the creativity and resourcefulness that went into coming up with those obstacles is commendable.
If you’re looking for a new endless game and think that going up sounds like a nice change from going right to left, you won’t be disappointed with Flyro. What the game lacks in style, it makes up for in stuff, and good old-fashioned fun gameplay.