One of the coolest things about the App Store is the sheer amount of obscure ports it exposes us iOS gamers to that we would have otherwise missed. Prior to the news of the iOS port hitting our forums, I had never heard of Battle for Wesnoth [$4.99 - iPhone / iPad] and tonight its creators are unleashing another open source game on to the App Store, Frogatto & Friends [$1.99]. Frogatto is a platformer with some of the most blatant classic video game influences I've seen in quite some time, and I mean that in the best way possible.

Everything from the style of the fantastic pixel art that makes up the game, to the way Frogatto deals with enemies, to interface elements all seem to be lovingly lifted from memories of the sixteen bit era. In the game you play as a tiny unemployed frog who sets out for adventure and employment. It doesn't take long before the villain of the game, Big Bad Milgram, is revealed, and your sights are set on restoring order to the world. Fighting through various boss fights, solving puzzles, and making your way through tons of enemies and platforming obstacles are all vital parts of Frogatto & Friends.

Much like Battle for Wesnoth, Frogatto is freely available online to play on either Mac or Windows machines (as well as some out of date Linux builds). It's really a toss up as to which version is better, as platformers like this really need the physical controls that playing on a keyboard provide. On the other hand, the iPhone port is great, but I'd really love to see some better game save handling.

Currently if you quit the game for any reason, you lose your progress from the last save point. Save points are plentiful throughout the game, but I really think we're at a point now where if you're releasing something more than a simple time waster you should really include better save state handling. Even using fast app switching loses your progress, which is a total bummer given how awesome it has been with iOS 4 to quickly and easily switch between checking your email or browsing the internet while playing a game.

If you can get past losing a little bit of progress if you quit the game, Frogatto is totally worth checking out. I've been completely captivated by both the art of the game, and the game world itself; so much so that while playing through the other games that have been released tonight to write about I kept wanting to go back to Frogatto & Friends. I'm a total sucker for games like this, and I doubt I'm alone on that. If nothing else, at least give the free PC version a try.

UPDATE: The developers have posted in our forums that they're looking in to the save issues when the app is quit, and it sounds like only some people are experiencing the problem. Much like Battle for Wesnoth, they plan on maintaining and improving Frogatto with updates.

  • Arti

    lepsza byłaby gra Superfrog przeniesiona z Amigi 500 przez Team17

  • Cyggie

    Domo arigato, Mr. Frogatto. (sorry, too obvious)

  • TellTales

    I'll wait for an HD version.
    Hopefully there will be an iPad version

    • Eng

      That's what i'm doing too...it looks so awesome though :(

      • Jetrel

        Buy it now and the copy you've paid for will probably evolve into an iPad native version. We're tentatively hoping to not release a specific "HD" version for the iPad, and instead just make the app universal.

        If enough people refuse to buy it unless it has the "HD" badge on it, I suppose we'll bow to market forces and make another copy that's the exact same thing except with "HD" in the name, but I hope that won't be necessary.

  • K

    I'm a sucker for platformers, and this one is no exception.

  • Maco

    @Jetrel
    I really respect that attitude towards iPad games. I'm sick of developers making the screen a bit bigger and charging another 5 dollars for the same app (I'm looking at you Angry Birds).

    Anyway to anyone doubting, this is a great game, played the PC version for 10 minutes and decided to purchase the iPhone version. Well worth the money.

    • http://www.jindofox.com jindofox

      Agreed, it's well said. A good game is a good game, and people who make Universal apps should be encouraged. I'm going to buy this now.

  • Johnny California

    I'm going to be honest!!! The controls suck... The + buttons is badly located on screen!!! I'm always pressing up instead of down!!! Please fix controls.... Plus make the frogs tongue longer is hard to capture enemies!!!

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      Longer tongue is one of the available upgrades.

  • http://monteboyd.com Monte Boyd

    I love this game! Only played briefly but as an avid old-school platformer and pixel art fanatic this is a joy to play. The artwork is simply gorgeous and the controls/movement is very smooth and enjoyable. Platformers are a hard one to get right with the touch screen but Frogatto does a damn fine job of it.

  • Mintey

    Seriously,make the controls a joystick or something.