capsule review

Agent Dash for iPhone and iPad

At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder Agent Dash

Agent Dash is a gesture-based action game that puts you in the well-polished shoes of an international spy. The object of the game from Full Fat is similar to side-scrolling platformer Robot Unicorn Attack—you need to prolong gameplay for as long as possible without hitting an obstacle. Death is inevitable and how long you’re able to dodge rocks, pits, and death traps is a matter of skill and timing.

The graphics are about the most compelling aspect of what is a fairly standard game. The 3-D world that you run through looks great on the iPhone 4, with bright textures and distinctive cartoonish models. The graphical quality comes at a tremendous cost, however: the game takes a while to load and burns through batteries. The developer seemingly spent more time on the graphical engine than the level design: You’ll be playing through the same randomly-generated jungle levels dozens of times.

Diamonds Are Forever: In Agent Dash, you gather up gems to unlock gadgets and gizmos, as you swipe your way through an obstacle course.

Agent Dash’s over-the-shoulder perspective, jungle setting, and swipe controls will remind some gamers of Temple Run. One key difference: Unlike Temple Run, Agent Dash doesn’t use tilt controls to position your agent, instead, you swipe left or right to position him on the screen, which can be a little awkward at first. The game has the same look-and-feel on the iPad as it does when you play on the iPhone or iPod touch.

In order to unlock gadgets and gizmos to keep yourself alive longer, you’ll need to gather the gems that are scattered throughout the level. (You can also load up on gems via in-app purchase.) And this means a great deal of replaying, death, and frustration. But this is standard fare for the genre, and Agent Dash at least has a compelling world and pretty face.

[Former associate editor Chris Holt remains a frequent contributor to Macworld.]

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At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder Agent Dash

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