Spoiler alert! Ski Safari is about as clean and simple as a game can be. It’s fun to play even if you suck at it, your kids can play for hours when you need them to be distracted and you can play for hours when you need distraction as well. Only a dollar and worth every penny. Best Buy.
First of all, ski safari is not a skiing safari as the name might imply. Yes, the game does bring together animals, avalanches and skis as the developers promise in the App Store. However, in safaris you shoot the animals. And safaris usually take place in the jungle. So ski safari is an oxymoron.
Ski biathlon might be appropriate for a game with skiing and shooting, but there is no shooting in Ski Safari. You can catch animals and they add ski powers. But Ski Safari is simply wrong. Cool. A great marketing call. But wrong.
Ski Safari has one level but that level becomes more extraordinary the more you accomplish. The basic game is to outrun an avalanche. As long as you stay ahead of the encroaching snow, you continue to earn points. Unfortunately, a number of obstacles and slope changes make it difficult to stay ahead of the snow.
The game offers a number of challenges and assigns rank as you complete them. The higher your rank (and further you make it down the slope) the more you unlock new animals with new skill enhancements.
Navigation is simple. Touch the screen to ski, hold down to backflip and tap quickly to recover from a crash. You can only go in one direction, down, and your speed (and instability) increase the further you ski without problems.
The game keeps score several ways. You earn points for distance and beating obstacles. But you also keep track of accomplishments as well, such as ten successful backflips or catching five penguins in the air. Once you finish one set of goals, a new set appears, and Ski Safari keeps track of your progress as you repeat the course.
Enhanced skills such as the flame boost help you get further away from the avalanche but they also make it harder to spot rocks and trees in time to avoid them.
As you rack up experience and accomplishments, you also release new animals, such as birds or penguins (or yeti). However, you don’t want to kill these animals, you want to catch them to add new abilities, including turbocharging and flame boosting.
Graphics are spectacular. Yes the characters are cartoonish, but at game play speeds, the colors and characters combine to stimulate visual enjoyment. I also have to say that this game really invokes the rush of speed in a way few other games can.
The game is easy to learn. It involves little more than mastering eye and finger communication. The only trick is to recognize the next ski jump or obstacle and know when to jump and when to roll. And your children will master the game far more quickly.
Jenny Manytoes rates Ski Safari
Jenny Manytoes would make biscuits all over Ski Safari. It’s bright, it’s fast and it takes me at least an hour to clean her paw prints off my iPad screen after she plays.
The Jenny Manytoes Rating System