Update: Sometimes You Die has just released on the App Store. You can grab it here.
Original Story: The video game world often gets criticised for relying too heavily on repetition and cliché. The iOS market, on the other hand, allows indie developers to flex their creative muscles and switch things up a little bit. Sometimes You Die (trailer below) is one such game, turning what you know about the entire medium on its head.
Designed with a simple black, white and grey colour palate, you control a tiny square as you navigate a series of elaborate levels filled with twists, turns and all sorts of deadly traps. The kicker is that your death constantly plays a critical role in your future survival. Impale your poor cube on a spike, then use it as a safe platform with your next life or kill yourself numerous times on a buzz saw to create a makeshift ladder.
From my brief hands-on with the game, however, the most intriguing element surfaces via the game’s constant internal monologue, questioning the very nature of game design. As you make perilous jumps, your guide wonders what constitutes a video game. Is it a measureable degree of fun? What if he completely changed the rules halfway through or charged an exorbitant amount of money for every level? What if there was no end, no reward – would you keep playing?
I won’t ruin all of the surprises I ran into – some humorous, some thought provoking, but needless to say this is an experiment well worth dabbling with and one I plan to for a while to come. You can check it out on the App store when it releases on March 27.
In the mean time, be sure to check out Issue 1 of Grab It Magazine for more indie gems on the App Store you didn't know existed.