Spirit Run: Fire vs. Ice will challenge your coordination and stress management

Sprite Runner

I’ve been playing video games for almost 30 years. I like to think that I’ve developed a certain level of hand-eye coordination and an ability to recognize patterns and learn rules reasonably quickly.

Spirit Run: Fire vs. Ice by Lunagames
Category: iOS Games
Works With: iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch
Price: Free

But Spirit Run: Fire vs. Ice, a new endless runner from developer Lunagames, made me question all of that. Suddenly, I was transforming when I wanted to jump, and jumping when I wanted to slide, and just falling the hell off of things that I normally wouldn’t.

That isn’t to say that it’s a bad game; it’s actually quite good. But be prepared to feel like a monkey trying to do algebra. You know, if that’s a thing that one might call upon monkeys to do.

Spirit Run: Fire vs. Ice will challenge your coordination and stress management

Here’s how it works: You play as a little sprite guy who can switch at will between fire and ice forms. You’re running — endlessly — through a retro-styled world full of low ceilings, bottomless pits, and elemental hazards.

You earn points based on how far you run, and you can earn multipliers by picking up fire and ice pick-ups. You have to be in the matching form to grab them, and if you miss one, your bonus resets. The game also has water and fire hazards that will kill you unless you also match their element.

This game has so many ways to kill you.

The controls are where most of the game’s challenge comes from, unfortunately. You tap anywhere on the right side of the screen to transform, and then the left side is split. Tapping the top half makes you jump, and tapping the lower half makes you slide. It takes way more coordination than you’d think, or maybe it’s just me, but I was constantly hitting the wrong thing and sliding off a ledge or something.

I got used to it after a while, but just know that you might often feel very awkward and ungraceful playing this. But it’s a lot of fun when I don’t suck at it.

Spirit RunGame Name: : Spirit Run: Fire vs. Ice
The Good: Running into a platform doesn’t automatically kill you. Very cool graphics.
The Bad: Controls take a lot of getting used to.
The Verdict: If you can rub your tummy while patting your head and cooking an omelet, you’ll get right into it. Otherwise, the learning curve is a bit steep (but well worth it).
Buy from: App Store – Spirit Run – Fire vs Ice – Lunagames

Cult of Mac rating: 4/5

About the author

Evan KillhamEvan Killham lives in Nebraska and isn't interested in football, so he has plenty of time to play and think about video games. He has written for Bitmob and GamesBeat and sometimes, he even goes outside. But not too often because he's heard there are bees out there.

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