Slide is a free reflex-testing game for iOS that takes the unlock screen slider from your iPhone and puts it to work elsewhere – mainly, as physical exercise for your thumb.
The humble unlock slider is perhaps one of the most overlooked, yet iconic, symbols of iOS. After a while, you know exactly where to slide your thumb across the screen, and you can do it without even looking.
Slide is all about sliding sliders just like that. The faster you can slide, the more points you get.
There are five slots visible. If they all filled up with unslid sliders, it’s game over. Simple as that.
I downloaded this game with some trepidation. I didn’t expect it to be much fun – but to my horror and surprise, I did find myself smiling while I played. The pace starts slow and picks up very gradually. You’re soon aware of having to deal with two sliders on screen at a time, then three, then four. As the pace picks up, your thumb has to do a great deal of work to keep the screen clear.
So, more fun than expected, but the appeal is limited. It might entertain for a short while, but I wouldn’t call it a keeper. Of course, for a free game, you have to keep your expectations appropriately low.
What did annoy me about this game – and the same applies to many other free apps – is the intrusive advertising. Yes, I know even free games have to earn their makers some money somehow, and I don’t object to advertising generally. What I object to is advertising that feels like it’s constantly jabbing you in the face with a stick, yelling “HEY! YOU! BUY SOMETHING! HEY! BUY!”
And that’s the feeling I get from this game. The game over screen is followed by a full screen ad, which you can only dismiss by tapping a teeny tiny little “x” in the corner. Because it’s so small, it’s easy to miss the “x” and tap the ad instead. Instead of ending the game and thinking “Cool, that was fun, I’ll have another go,” my thoughts end up as “Dammit, stop hassling me.”
Which is not the sort of thought that’s going to encourage me to keep playing, to be honest.
Thankfully, there’s an in-app purchase (one dollar) that removes the ads (oh, and makes the sliders change color, but it’s the ads that matter). If you enjoy the game, this is an in-app purchase worth making.
Pro: It’s different, and offers more short-term entertainment than expected
Con: Advertising wants your soul, and doesn’t care how it gets it