IMG_0969Two Lives Left have been posting regular updates in a thread on our forums about their upcoming game, Wheeler's Treasure. I recently got my hands on a copy of the game, and so far I'm extremely impressed. Not only did they seemingly create an entire game inspired by the Orlando Bloom water wheel fight scene in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, but they've really managed to nail the difficulty curve.

One of the things we've discussed at length during our podcasts is how much we enjoy games that foster the feeling of if you could only have managed to not make that last mistake you could have gone even farther, almost forcing you to play again to see if you could beat your previous attempt. Games like Flight Control and its associated spinoffs, Doodle Jump, and the recently discovered Boost 3D all provide this experience, and so far Wheeler's Treasure is giving me a similar vibe.

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The goal of the game is to see how many yarrds (get it?) you can accompany a wheel through a sidescrolling environment filled with all kinds of obstacles. Your character is moved using simple swiping gestures, and buttons in the bottom corner of the screen control the use of your items-- Another clever feature of Wheeler's Treasure.

The game includes achievements, such as picking up a certain number of jewels or stomping on a certain number of bats in one run. Each achievement unlocks a map that gives you a hint for where you can find items that your character can equip. During the tutorial you're awarded boots that allow you to double jump, and a hook that you can use to grab on to the wheel for a brief period of time. Meeting the goal of the jewels achievement tips you off to where you can find the loot magnet, making picking up coins easier.

IMG_0970The entire game is wrapped in a whimsical hand drawn art style with music that matches perfectly with the look and feel of the game. Wheeler's Treasure features complete OpenFeint integration, so when your game is finally over either from your death or your wheel's destruction you can submit your score to the online leaderboards before starting again. These scores appear in-game as tombstones, providing an excellent indication of how you're stacking up next to your friends' performance.

The game world is procedurally generated, so no two games will ever be the same, and obviously the farther you go the harder the game becomes. As you progress in game, you also will unlock additional 3D scenes to reveal the story behind Wheeler's Treasure.

Two Lives Left recently released this gameplay trailer, along with a few other gameplay videos and control demonstrations in their thread for the game:

Wheeler's Treasure has already been submitted to Apple for approval and is expected to appear on the App Store sometime soon.

  • Lord Gek

    Very clever and original!

    I love how the game integrates the treasure items. Before the game starts you can rummage through your collected treasures and determine which you'll equip on your little paper doll figure (each has a prescribed space on your character so, for example, you have decide between the telescope or camera, you can't carry both at the same time).

    Another clever bit is the scoring. It couldn't be simpler as it is simply the distance you've traveled plus whatever gold you have left on you when you die. The primary purpose of the gold, besides adding to your end score, is to repair missing sections of your "Water Wheel" (or Hamster Wheel in my eyes). Do you keep it well repaired or save the cash as long as possible to beat your last score?

  • Lord Gek

    Very clever and original!

    I love how the game integrates the treasure items. Before the game starts you can rummage through your collected treasures and determine which you'll equip on your little paper doll figure (each has a prescribed space on your character so, for example, you have decide between the telescope or camera, you can't carry both at the same time).

    Another clever bit is the scoring. It couldn't be simpler as it is simply the distance you've traveled plus whatever gold you have left on you when you die. The primary purpose of the gold, besides adding to your end score, is to repair missing sections of your "Water Wheel" (or Hamster Wheel in my eyes). Do you keep it well repaired or save the cash as long as possible to beat your last score?

  • peter

    This looks so cool and different........SOLD :)

  • peter

    This looks so cool and different........SOLD :)

  • araczynski

    i like the art and engine, but the premise of the game just leaves me uninterested. seems like a lot of effort was put into the game/mechanics, for little reason other than to stick to a wheel as long as you can.

    NOT SOLD.

    • peter

      We will see. I have not played yet so I can't say for sure BUT someof the most loved games (like doodle jump) are the simple ones:)

  • araczynski

    i like the art and engine, but the premise of the game just leaves me uninterested. seems like a lot of effort was put into the game/mechanics, for little reason other than to stick to a wheel as long as you can.

    NOT SOLD.

    • peter

      We will see. I have not played yet so I can't say for sure BUT someof the most loved games (like doodle jump) are the simple ones:)

  • cprloe

    This looks very promising. It's on my short list (okay, maybe it's not so short) of day one purchases. Any idea on price?

  • cprloe

    This looks very promising. It's on my short list (okay, maybe it's not so short) of day one purchases. Any idea on price?

  • member

    Vote in the poll for the item that sounds the most fun
    http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=29921

  • member

    Vote in the poll for the item that sounds the most fun
    http://forums.toucharcade.com/showthread.php?t=29921