Any Landing Will Make You Plane Crazy [Review]

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Most endless running games are the definition of pick-and-up-play affairs: sometimes with more depth than you’d expect, but also games that will immediately graspable by the most casual of audiences.

Any Landing by Strange Flavour
Category: iOS Games
Works With: iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch
Price: Free w/ in-app purchases

An endless runner in an airplane (an endless flyer?) Any Landing is a bit different. Taking its name from the old saying about any landing you can walk away from being a good one, Any Landing will most appeal to a more hardcore game audience — the kind of people who will invest a few hours in mastering control mechanics.

Early on in the game, you'll be begging for any landing at all -- not just good ones.

Early on in the game, you’ll be begging for any landing at all — not just good ones.

You pilot a plane across various locations, which you have to periodically land to pick up new passengers. As you fly you get to collect power-ups, which eventually let you upgrade your plane in various ways. This is completely necessary since the first plane you fly in the game is very clearly nearing the end of its days — evidenced by the fact that your wheels fall off shortly after takeoff.

You will fail a lot of landings during your initial gameplay.

Controls take a bit of getting used to. They rely on tilting your iOS device, along with two buttons for “engine” and “break.” Tilting has the effect of either making your plane raise up (which slows it down), or else lower (which speeds it up). Get these wrong and you will stall. There’s a tutorial mode, but I didn’t find it a whole lot of help since it only gives you the more cursory of introductions. Once you do get used to the controls, however, they play a key part in making the game as much fun as it is.

Landing mechanics are even tougher — and are never explained in the tutorial at all. You will fail a lot of landings during your initial gameplay, but once you have the technique mastered it is oddly rewarding.

As is this whole game, really. An unexpected gem.

Screen_Shot_2014-02-20_at_08Game Name: Any Landing
The Good: A somewhat unique variation on the endless runner concept. Hugely addictive and rewarding once you get into it. The IAP are also limited to $10, which is nice.
The Bad: Those who don’t like tilt controls may find it irritating. There’s a heckuva learning curve.
The Verdict: How much you enjoy Any Landing depends on what type of iOS gamer you are. If you’re looking for instant gratification, go elsewhere. If you’re looking for some deep gameplay mechanics and an overall rewarding experience, you’ll find much to like. I fell into the latter category.
Buy from: App Store

Cult of Mac rating: 4/5

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About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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