Ramp Champ (iPhone)_256x256The Iconfactory was launched back in 1996 as a repository for icon packs as well as software for creating and using icons. Since then, they've been responsible for the creation of two great iPhone apps, Frenzic [$2.99], a fast-paced puzzle game and Twitteriffic [$3.99 / Free], one of the original premium Twitter clients available on the App Store.

Their latest game, Ramp Champ [App Store] takes the arcade game of skee ball, shrinks it down to the iPhone screen, and applies the same thick layer of highly stylized graphical work seen in all the other Iconfactory products. Included in the initial release of Ramp Champ are four different virtual skee ball machines. Clown Town has a carnival theme, Breakwater Bay is underwater, Space Swarm tips its hat at Space Invaders, and The Icon Garden pays homage to Iconfactory's roots in icon design.

Controls are simple and shares the same strangely compelling gameplay as Paper Toss [Free]. Flicking your finger up from the bottom of the screen rolls a ball, and depending on how fast you flick and which direction you swipe towards controls the power and aim of your shots. All of the targets award different amounts of points, and after rolling all your balls the game dispenses virtual tickets that you can buy virtual prizes for.

Space Swarm Redeem

If you're old enough to have been around when arcades were popular, you likely have fond memories of dumping quarters in to skee ball machines, cramming your pockets full of tickets, and claiming some completely worthless reward from the prize counter. As the eventual owner of several of those terribly useless over-sized stuffed animals, Ramp Champ has provided an awesome amount of nostalgia. There's more to the game though as each of the four included machines also have their own sub-set of goals (achievements).

For instance, The Icon Garden's progressively harder goals are to plant all the pixel flowers, tip over the canine bovine, and score over 13,000 points. Planting the pixel flowers is as simple as hitting every target, I presume the canine bovine has something to do with Clarus the Dogcow, and scoring over 13,000 is self-explanatory. Completing all the goals requires a high amount of precision, and in my few days with the game I've been unable to complete more than a few of them. As a result, Ramp Champ has kept me coming back for more, since most goals seem simple at first (How hard can it be to hit 6 things with 10 balls?) but end up being much more difficult than they appear.

The Iconfactory is already offering two add-on packs that can be purchased for $0.99 a piece. Each pack contains 2 new ramps, 6 new goals, 18 new prizes, and shiny new trophies. . The videos below show the included levels on the left and the ones available via downloadable-content on the right:

If you loved Paper Toss [Free] or the included screenshots/videos are tickling your nostalgia bone, I recommend picking up Ramp Champ, as you will likely enjoy it as much as I have.

App Store Link: Ramp Champ, $1.99

TouchArcade Rating

  • Gregory K

    Indeed, that brings back memories... I will pick that one up... if not for Nostalgia alone.

  • Gregory K

    Indeed, that brings back memories... I will pick that one up... if not for Nostalgia alone.

  • Kiwii

    Since there is a Twitter Bird and a Light Riders in the prize section, there should be more colabs. Pocket God Doll. Harbor Master Toy boat. Etc.

    • Ape lover

      looks boring

    • Hareesun

      Well, the bird was actually designed by the Icon Factory, for their other app Twitterrific. And the Light Cycle is in there because DS Media made LightBikes...

  • Kiwii

    Since there is a Twitter Bird and a Light Riders in the prize section, there should be more colabs. Pocket God Doll. Harbor Master Toy boat. Etc.

    • Ape lover

      looks boring

    • Hareesun

      Well, the bird was actually designed by the Icon Factory, for their other app Twitterrific. And the Light Cycle is in there because DS Media made LightBikes...

  • Chase

    I love the UI. It's so beautiful.

    And Kiwii, they didn't do much collaborating except, well, with themselves considering they made both of those apps.

  • Chase

    I love the UI. It's so beautiful.

    And Kiwii, they didn't do much collaborating except, well, with themselves considering they made both of those apps.

  • Greg

    This makes me want a HBO's Carnivàle to have an app with a bunch of themed mini-games. The Tarot cards alone would be worth it.

  • Greg

    This makes me want a HBO's Carnivàle to have an app with a bunch of themed mini-games. The Tarot cards alone would be worth it.

  • iamse7en

    That game would drive me nuts. I don't know. I hate the carnival.

  • iamse7en

    That game would drive me nuts. I don't know. I hate the carnival.

  • david

    ideed it looks awesome and lovely designed... I dont know what to think about these "in-app-buying-crap"... to me, it would be cooler if they would do something like: if you keep it up in the top 100 for two weeks - we will add a new level... if you bring it to the top 10 - we will offer new ramps and prices...what do you think about such additional purchases...?

  • david

    ideed it looks awesome and lovely designed... I dont know what to think about these "in-app-buying-crap"... to me, it would be cooler if they would do something like: if you keep it up in the top 100 for two weeks - we will add a new level... if you bring it to the top 10 - we will offer new ramps and prices...what do you think about such additional purchases...?

  • The man who wasn't there

    yawn

  • The man who wasn't there

    yawn

  • http://www.GalleyTech.com/ Galley

    The Icon Garden was an actual garden on the Apple campus.
    http://doogul.com/doug/sites/dmw/icongarden.html

    I bought this game and love it.

  • http://www.GalleyTech.com/ Galley

    The Icon Garden was an actual garden on the Apple campus.
    http://doogul.com/doug/sites/dmw/icongarden.html

    I bought this game and love it.

  • Mark

    i bought this, it's lovely and the graphics are VERY nice, the ball movement can take a little geting used to though.. its ok, but somehow it feels a little odd... maybe its just me, either way im happy that i bought it and its definitely fun and cute... frenzic still stands as one of my fave iphone apps

  • Mark

    i bought this, it's lovely and the graphics are VERY nice, the ball movement can take a little geting used to though.. its ok, but somehow it feels a little odd... maybe its just me, either way im happy that i bought it and its definitely fun and cute... frenzic still stands as one of my fave iphone apps

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    Am I the only one who seems to be having difficulties with this game? I'm finding it really easy to hit the third tier objects (1000pts.) and almost impossible to hit the first tier objects (250pts.). This seems rather odd to me.

    I've been trying to get the xxx award, but can't hit the lower tier objects at all.

    The game "looks" wonderful, but the actual play seems like it needs work...

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    Am I the only one who seems to be having difficulties with this game? I'm finding it really easy to hit the third tier objects (1000pts.) and almost impossible to hit the first tier objects (250pts.). This seems rather odd to me.

    I've been trying to get the xxx award, but can't hit the lower tier objects at all.

    The game "looks" wonderful, but the actual play seems like it needs work...

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    Sorry, I meant to change the "xxx" to "plant all the pixel flowers".

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    Sorry, I meant to change the "xxx" to "plant all the pixel flowers".

  • Rustyjaw

    "Am I the only one who seems to be having difficulties with this game? I'm finding it really easy to hit the third tier objects (1000pts.) and almost impossible to hit the first tier objects (250pts.). This seems rather odd to me."

    I thought it was odd at first, but then I discovered that when you clear a row, it often get replaced with new, higher-point targets. So on the Clowns level for example, if you clear the first row of 500-750pt clowns, they are replaced by three 1000 point ducks. So there is a large reward for clearing the clowns, which adds to the challenge.

  • Rustyjaw

    "Am I the only one who seems to be having difficulties with this game? I'm finding it really easy to hit the third tier objects (1000pts.) and almost impossible to hit the first tier objects (250pts.). This seems rather odd to me."

    I thought it was odd at first, but then I discovered that when you clear a row, it often get replaced with new, higher-point targets. So on the Clowns level for example, if you clear the first row of 500-750pt clowns, they are replaced by three 1000 point ducks. So there is a large reward for clearing the clowns, which adds to the challenge.

  • crsrc

    they should have made multiple different games rather than a bunch of different versions of the same game. this game looks nice but definitely not worth it

  • crsrc

    they should have made multiple different games rather than a bunch of different versions of the same game. this game looks nice but definitely not worth it

  • http://www.astrosaurus.com astrosaurus

    I love the Iconfactory, their stuff is always beautifully designed. This game is no exception. Where it lacks, however, is gameplay. It's kind of clunky and beyond playing for a few minutes there really isn't much left to go back for. I played all of the levels at least once and that's probably going to be it. It's a shame because it ranks among the best with presentation.

    • Alex

      You're supposed to play to win the goals. I have finished all but two of the main two objectives aside from points, and 3 of the point goals. It's harder than it looks as sometimes, you need to knock down two at a time in order to gain the goal. It's definitely a lot more fun than you would think. This game needs more goals though. I think 3 goals per level is too few. Make it five, with points only being one goal. It's fun to try to figure out how to make some of the new targets to appear. I want more. At least twice as much as it has now. I'm greedy, I know. It's worth the price IMO.

  • http://www.astrosaurus.com astrosaurus

    I love the Iconfactory, their stuff is always beautifully designed. This game is no exception. Where it lacks, however, is gameplay. It's kind of clunky and beyond playing for a few minutes there really isn't much left to go back for. I played all of the levels at least once and that's probably going to be it. It's a shame because it ranks among the best with presentation.

    • Alex

      You're supposed to play to win the goals. I have finished all but two of the main two objectives aside from points, and 3 of the point goals. It's harder than it looks as sometimes, you need to knock down two at a time in order to gain the goal. It's definitely a lot more fun than you would think. This game needs more goals though. I think 3 goals per level is too few. Make it five, with points only being one goal. It's fun to try to figure out how to make some of the new targets to appear. I want more. At least twice as much as it has now. I'm greedy, I know. It's worth the price IMO.

  • TKO

    You know, I like the whole skiball thang they got going on ..but what I really want to do is bring up a crosshair and start shooting the targets. Take the same sets of targets, have them pop up and down, and let us use tilt controls to actually *shoot* at them just like "Duck Shoot by Carnival Labs." That's what I want.

    IMHO, wouldn't take a (relatively) huge amount of effort and *boom*: you've got two games in one gorgeous gorgeous package.

    Well, that's what I was thinking, anyway. :)

  • TKO

    You know, I like the whole skiball thang they got going on ..but what I really want to do is bring up a crosshair and start shooting the targets. Take the same sets of targets, have them pop up and down, and let us use tilt controls to actually *shoot* at them just like "Duck Shoot by Carnival Labs." That's what I want.

    IMHO, wouldn't take a (relatively) huge amount of effort and *boom*: you've got two games in one gorgeous gorgeous package.

    Well, that's what I was thinking, anyway. :)

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    @Rustyjaw: My point is that it's easier to hit the top 1000pt targets than the lower 250pt targets. In normal skee-ball, the lower the point value, the easer it is to get. Plus, not getting any points, though not impossible to do, is pretty tough. In Ramp Champ, it's pretty easy to drop the ball in front of all the targets, or miss the first (lowest) row of targets.

    I have both 10balls7cups and ArcadeBowl and both are pretty easy at getting the big target/cup (10pts?), and pretty darn hard at getting the 100pts traget/cup.

    I need to give this game more time, but so far, I'm not all that impressed. I guess I really expected more from IconFactory.

  • http://www.metzener.com/switcherblog/ Dave M.

    @Rustyjaw: My point is that it's easier to hit the top 1000pt targets than the lower 250pt targets. In normal skee-ball, the lower the point value, the easer it is to get. Plus, not getting any points, though not impossible to do, is pretty tough. In Ramp Champ, it's pretty easy to drop the ball in front of all the targets, or miss the first (lowest) row of targets.

    I have both 10balls7cups and ArcadeBowl and both are pretty easy at getting the big target/cup (10pts?), and pretty darn hard at getting the 100pts traget/cup.

    I need to give this game more time, but so far, I'm not all that impressed. I guess I really expected more from IconFactory.

  • http://www.kuyimobile.com/ egarayblas

    Saw that Louie Mantia was involved in creating the UI! Picked it up right away! :)

  • http://www.kuyimobile.com/ egarayblas

    Saw that Louie Mantia was involved in creating the UI! Picked it up right away! :)

  • bobechi

    Can anyone explain what Mantia says on his blog? "A little hint: It only takes one little ticket to redeem some extra goodies, it’s just a matter of how long to hold onto it." Am I supposed to keep only one ticket for like a week without playing the game?? That's silly.

  • bobechi

    Can anyone explain what Mantia says on his blog? "A little hint: It only takes one little ticket to redeem some extra goodies, it’s just a matter of how long to hold onto it." Am I supposed to keep only one ticket for like a week without playing the game?? That's silly.

  • Hareesun

    Found the secret... :D Special trophies anyone?

  • Hareesun

    Found the secret... :D Special trophies anyone?

  • flow

    I've enjoyed it, but the crashing is starting to become more annoying than the fun of playing. Hoping for an upgraydd soon to fix it. Yesterday during my 2-3 hours of playing, it crashed over 20 times. :(

  • flow

    I've enjoyed it, but the crashing is starting to become more annoying than the fun of playing. Hoping for an upgraydd soon to fix it. Yesterday during my 2-3 hours of playing, it crashed over 20 times. :(

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/ujnhunter Ujn Hunter

    not bad... the ball rolling is a little awkward... Arcade Bowling does it better, maybe it's the shorter ramp? Also kept crashing on me... would be better for $0.99

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/ujnhunter Ujn Hunter

    not bad... the ball rolling is a little awkward... Arcade Bowling does it better, maybe it's the shorter ramp? Also kept crashing on me... would be better for $0.99

  • Dave

    Call me when it's free. ;)

    Seriously though it is the same thing over and over again with different graphics.

    That has to get old real quick. Now if it wasn't just "skee-ball" forty different ways that would be something else entirely.

  • Dave

    Call me when it's free. ;)

    Seriously though it is the same thing over and over again with different graphics.

    That has to get old real quick. Now if it wasn't just "skee-ball" forty different ways that would be something else entirely.

  • http://iconfactory.com IF Webmaster

    A quick note to let you all know that Ramp Champ 1.0.1 has been released in the App Store. This update fixes problems with the application crashing associated with high memory use as well as improves performance on old devices. We recommend everyone upgrade to the new version.

    I also feel the need to address some of the critical points discussed here about Ramp Champ, particularly that the game is the "Same thing over and over". I wonder if the same negative issue is brought up about any traditional pinball game or other skee ball games in the app store like Arcade Bowling or ten balls, 7 cups? Ramp Champ has FAR more variation than any of these games which have all been in the top 100 for months on end. Ramp Champ is a $2.00 game, not a $30 Nintendo DS title or MMORPG.

    If you played each ramp "just once" then you didn't even play it enough to know what the goals are or how difficult / fun they are to win. Don't just dismiss the game because you don't happen to like collecting games or skee ball isn't your thing. Between the goals, dozens of prizes, original soundtrack, add-on packs, trophies, gorgeous art, hidden surprises and more, there's plenty in Ramp Champ to keep 95% of gamers coming back for weeks on end.

    Thanks for listening.

  • http://iconfactory.com IF Webmaster

    A quick note to let you all know that Ramp Champ 1.0.1 has been released in the App Store. This update fixes problems with the application crashing associated with high memory use as well as improves performance on old devices. We recommend everyone upgrade to the new version.

    I also feel the need to address some of the critical points discussed here about Ramp Champ, particularly that the game is the "Same thing over and over". I wonder if the same negative issue is brought up about any traditional pinball game or other skee ball games in the app store like Arcade Bowling or ten balls, 7 cups? Ramp Champ has FAR more variation than any of these games which have all been in the top 100 for months on end. Ramp Champ is a $2.00 game, not a $30 Nintendo DS title or MMORPG.

    If you played each ramp "just once" then you didn't even play it enough to know what the goals are or how difficult / fun they are to win. Don't just dismiss the game because you don't happen to like collecting games or skee ball isn't your thing. Between the goals, dozens of prizes, original soundtrack, add-on packs, trophies, gorgeous art, hidden surprises and more, there's plenty in Ramp Champ to keep 95% of gamers coming back for weeks on end.

    Thanks for listening.

  • bc

    Thanks for the review. Great looking, fun little game. Too bad it doesn't allow multiple users on the same iPhone, each with their own record of scores, tickets collected and loot purchased.

    are you listening, Icon Factory? :)

  • bc

    Thanks for the review. Great looking, fun little game. Too bad it doesn't allow multiple users on the same iPhone, each with their own record of scores, tickets collected and loot purchased.

    are you listening, Icon Factory? :)

  • Johnny Squarepants

    OKAY! I LOVE this game, but have no idea about the "little sekret." Would somebody be so kind as to either give another hint or just tell us what to do to get those other trophies? Thanks!

  • Johnny Squarepants

    OKAY! I LOVE this game, but have no idea about the "little sekret." Would somebody be so kind as to either give another hint or just tell us what to do to get those other trophies? Thanks!

  • JC

    Wait, so the Icon Factory webmaster comes here, reads the comments, and decides to only address the issue of whether iPhone games are fun or not. Wha?

    Look, I like this game. I guess. I've been playing it for several hours over and over, so I either like it or hate it so much I can't let it win. Regardless, there are definitely "wonky" physics issues as several people (including TA) have pointed out. It's not just a play/difficulty thing. Identical gestures should not produce varied results. Whatever. I find it really frustrating when designers go into defense mode when flaws are pointed out in a game. You have an entirely free QA team here on this site, don't patronize everyone.

    Also, "shiny trophies" is not a reason to buy an upgrade pack. You can do better than that. I don't think I'll buy any upgrade packs unless there's a control update. I want to, but I won't.

  • JC

    Wait, so the Icon Factory webmaster comes here, reads the comments, and decides to only address the issue of whether iPhone games are fun or not. Wha?

    Look, I like this game. I guess. I've been playing it for several hours over and over, so I either like it or hate it so much I can't let it win. Regardless, there are definitely "wonky" physics issues as several people (including TA) have pointed out. It's not just a play/difficulty thing. Identical gestures should not produce varied results. Whatever. I find it really frustrating when designers go into defense mode when flaws are pointed out in a game. You have an entirely free QA team here on this site, don't patronize everyone.

    Also, "shiny trophies" is not a reason to buy an upgrade pack. You can do better than that. I don't think I'll buy any upgrade packs unless there's a control update. I want to, but I won't.

  • Nick

    The secret...
    1st off, think a little bit.
    "A little hint: It only takes one little ticket to redeem some extra goodies, it’s just a matter of how long to hold onto it."

    At the bottom of your screen, click REDEEM
    In the top right is your ticket count. Click and hold on to your ticket(s). Wait a few seconds and release your finger. Voila

  • Nick

    The secret...
    1st off, think a little bit.
    "A little hint: It only takes one little ticket to redeem some extra goodies, it’s just a matter of how long to hold onto it."

    At the bottom of your screen, click REDEEM
    In the top right is your ticket count. Click and hold on to your ticket(s). Wait a few seconds and release your finger. Voila

  • http://www.hauntedland.co.uk Lee Foster

    I'm hooked on this bloody game. Keep telling myself one more go and then another 30 mins goes by! It is a challenge and games should be. If they were easy I'd get bored. What I have found is that certain combinations reveal new items to knock down and score higher points.

    Knock all the 50 point grave stones down in the Grave Danger (you have to buy it) and see what pops up. Hit that and then see what happens. This game is really deep and the better skilled you are and the more things you try, you find another layer.

    Graphics and music, everything looks and sounds great - lovely little additions like trophies and announce your score on twitter etc make this app fantastic value for money. When you consider DS console games come in at £30+ when new, this little gem is less than £2. You must buy and explore it - and the add-ons are well worth it too.

    If you like a challenge and don't mind working for rewards this is for you. If you want something simple, it's for you too.

  • http://www.hauntedland.co.uk Lee Foster

    I'm hooked on this bloody game. Keep telling myself one more go and then another 30 mins goes by! It is a challenge and games should be. If they were easy I'd get bored. What I have found is that certain combinations reveal new items to knock down and score higher points.

    Knock all the 50 point grave stones down in the Grave Danger (you have to buy it) and see what pops up. Hit that and then see what happens. This game is really deep and the better skilled you are and the more things you try, you find another layer.

    Graphics and music, everything looks and sounds great - lovely little additions like trophies and announce your score on twitter etc make this app fantastic value for money. When you consider DS console games come in at £30+ when new, this little gem is less than £2. You must buy and explore it - and the add-ons are well worth it too.

    If you like a challenge and don't mind working for rewards this is for you. If you want something simple, it's for you too.

  • joseph

    I like to eat my kids poop and treat us soldiers unfairly for I am no better than the taliban that i ran and hid from while others died

  • joseph

    I like to eat my kids poop and treat us soldiers unfairly for I am no better than the taliban that i ran and hid from while others died