Sour Fling by Other Ocean is one of the App Store’s newest physics based platformers. Similar in style and play to Chillingo’s Blobster, Sour Fling finds you taking control of bouncy, physics-bound gummy characters that journey through a factory, collecting their shorter fellow gummy characters along the way and leading them to the exit.
The soury sweet delights are controlled in the exact way you would expect, similar to Blobster and any other bouncy platformer game. Tugging on the character prepares the bounce, and moving around determines the trajectory. As expected, an arrow shows up that indicates not just trajectory, but the force of the jump as well in the usual “longer and more red means stronger jump” fashion.
Sour Fling stays true to its genre with the general rule of getting from point A to point B, with the additional requirement of collecting a certain amount of sour patch kids along the way.
Some exits will only open if you have collected a certain number of sour patch kids. These mini-characters are found floating around in the levels, and while the earlier levels make it extremely easy to pick them up, things get a little bit harder as the game progresses.
As you advance through the game, you find that some levels contain multiple characters, say a green one and an orange one, and you begin noticing that the floating sour patch kids that are normally a grey color take the color of the character collecting them. That’s when you have to figure out which character is going to collect which sour patch kids. You’ll quickly find yourself strategizing when you realize there are certain routes each character needs to take in order to reach the exit, and if you want to reach an exit that is actually accessible, you need to collect a certain number of the delicious tykes on your way.
Adding locked doors that need levers to be pulled, vats of green acid, spikes, moving electricity panels, icy platforms and enemies that kill on hit only increases the amount of planning you need to put in if you want to actually get a decent score by the end of the level.
You’re rewarded according to the number of bounces it takes you to reach the exits, as well as the number of sour patch kids you’ve saved along the way. Each death subtracts 1 saved kid, so it’s best to avoid dying, though you can always just restart the level if you’ve messed up more than you’d like.
The graphics for the game are great, with detailed, animated backgrounds and fun, brightly colored characters. A good deal of work obviously went into creating the atmosphere, which is made whole by some original music pieces that fit the general feel of the game very well. A very nice addition to the game is the option to have symbols show up above the heads of the characters so as to make it easier for color blind players to tell which character is which.
The first 20 levels which are free are finished quickly, and you can virtually fly through the levels if you don’t care about your score, but if you’re an achievement nut, you should definitely take the time to collect as many points as possible, as well as all the achievements. Sour Fling has Game Center fully integrated so there’s no good reason not to take advantage of that.
You’ll have to cough up some money for the next 50 levels, but honestly, since the first 20 are free and they do the game justice, why wouldn’t you?