Knitted Deer (out now, $0.99) is one of Forest Moon’s latest entries to the App Store. It’s a unique endless runner in the sense that it looks really, really plain. As its name suggests, everything looks knitted. You control a deer as it prances through a long stretch of various animals and objects to avoid, protecting the two lives you have – one to spare, one that ends the game. As with all endless runners, the aim is to reach the farthest and collect the most coins. Whether or not Knitted Deer makes the journey fun is a whole other question on its own.
You should know the controls by now. Tap once to jump, twice to jump higher and tap the right side of the screen to fire. There are three places you can visit – Earth, Heaven, and Hell. You start on Earth which is where the weird jumping animals and fences are. If you die, you go straight to Hell because you know, you’ve been a bad deer. This is where you avoid fire and bats which try to claw your head off (yeah, it can get pretty vulgar for a game that looks like a sweater knitted by your grandmother).
The graphics give the game a surprisingly warm and cosy feel. They aren’t colorful and incredibly artistic — they all fit together nicely and are easy on the eye. You can play this in bed before you go to sleep. But that’s because the graphics are also a tad boring. In fact, after playing a few rounds, they are incredibly boring. I understand that the whole point of the game is to appear like it is knitted and that restricts the game entirely, but there’s just not enough to keep me interested in what’s to come. The only thing to keep you going is the competition within the Game Center leaderboards. Other than that, there isn’t any special change in scenery or obstacles to explore.
Coins can be exchanged for weapons in the shop. Apparently deers can use shotguns and shields now, so that’s cool. But these upgrades don’t make the game any less frustrating when you die. In most other endless runners, if you clip the side of an object, you have a split second to jump again and escape your demise. In Knitted Deer, the slightest scratch of a fence (or whatever the box is) can send you straight to Hell. Basically, you can’t mess up at all.
iFanzine Verdict: Knitted Deer has the potential to be really interesting. The knitted visuals make the game warm and cosy but that’s about as far as it goes. I found myself closing the game after two rounds – there just isn’t anything interesting to explore. The awesome soundtrack and simple controls add two weak positive points, but for now there are several other endless runners that you should spend your dollar on.