Halfbrick, the studio behind the enormously popular fruit homicide game, Fruit Ninja [.99 / Lite], are about three months away from debuting a brand new title on the App Store. And there’s a twist: it stars a familiar face, Monster Dash’s [.99] Barry Steakfries.

Actually, Steakfries and Monster Dash are great starting points when describing this upcoming title, Machinegun Jetpack. It looks and works a lot like Monster Dash. It’s a traditional runner, so it has a lone, endless level and randomly generated content.

Where it differs, it really differs. Instead of controlling a protagonist who can merely run, you control an avatar that’s hooked into a jetpack. Tapping on the screen keeps Barry afloat, and you’ll need to do that to avoid all the vertical obstacles such as electricity or rockets or lasers.

Ratcheting up the intensity of the experience is a goal of Halfbrick’s. Perhaps the best example of this is in the “vehicle” pick-ups that give you control of a robot reminiscent of ED-209 or even the motorcycle from Monster Dash. There’s also a special gravity suit that lets you to run on the top and bottom of the screen with a tap, and a teleportation power that allows you to jump all over the level.

Here’s a video of the game in action from our demo at GDC in San Francisco. The first part is footage from the iPad version; the other is the iPhone version.

At the demo, I was more impressed with the amount of side content as opposed to the explosions, which to be frank, is a little out of character for me. As you play, you’ll collect coins that you can then, in turn, spend on upgrades to your jetpack. You can also pick up bigger coins that, at the end of a single play, give you the opportunity to use a massive slot machine. If you’re lucky, you’ll earn rewards like double coins on your next play or even a Continue that puts you back in the game right where Barry fell. This is good, game-expanding stuff that adds a little more to the “just one more time” play.

Machinegun Jetpack is still three or so months out. Halfbrick told us that it plans to launch the title as a Universal game complete with Game Center support. The target price is also 99 cents, so get ready to take the plunge a little later this year.

  • Bo

    Same as Monster Dash.. boring, before it's out.

  • Anonymous

    I really like Monster Dash, and while I'd rather see something completely different, this looks like good fun as well. I also have to continue giving Halfbrick props for the Universal + Game Center support in their recent releases. Makes for easy purchases.

  • E_Domina

    i was thinking this could've been iap for monster dash

  • Thomas20035

    Looks very fun. Can't wait.

  • Toxin

    While it does look fun, do we really need MORE endless runners in the App Store?

    I for one am getting sick of them.

    • Robotron2084

      I agree. These endless random runner games are getting tiresome.

  • Walter

    Boy, that got boring real quick. I didn't even make it through the entire gameplay video. There is a little bit more to a good game than just running up a high score, but I don't think Halfbrick understands that.

  • Dans

    Jetpacks and guns = Win!. It does have guns right?

  • Robotron2084

    Meh. Another endless runner game. >_< We don't need so many.

    How about an actual full fledged platform game with those graphics and gameplay elements, with real levels and bosses etc.

  • http://www.appzillah.com Arno Shahmoradian

    Nice! Can't wait to play.

  • Dyscode

    Wasn´t that Age of Zombies? with Steakfries?

    • http://twitter.com/snowy2004 Stéphane Lachance

      He stared in both Age of Zombies and Monster Dash. And it seems he'll be back for Machine Gun Jetpack.

  • Eugekava

    The game looks fun. I'll be getting it. Don't see the need for pockies machine between levels though. Completely unnecessary. Besides, gambling is evil - please take them out.

  • J-Kid

    would easily buy this if they will take out bad A** hog as i sometimes share ipod with younger children

    • Gwet17

      Oh, don't mind the guns and murder, but they have GOT to take out the A-word!

      • Time Lord

        It goes a little like this -

        kid sees gun... kid says "bang.. bang"
        kid sees cartoon character go splat... kid goes "argghh splat, death sound"
        kid sees the word A** ... kid runs around screaming A** at every future event.

        There really isn't a need for it. Like most games these days people are adding curse words for the sake of adding them. Take Black Ops for example. I played through it and while the action and violence are crazy and over the top, the language is a little ridicules. Every bad scene or action event has to throw in 3-4 F* this and Sh*t that. You can tell a story or describe an item without resulting to foul language and explicit terms.

      • EastsideStompers

        I also feel the same. Maybe I'm getting old. I was quite taken a back in NOVA 2 with 'kill that bast**d' in every fight scene. Maybe not the strongest blasphemy, but I would have enjoyed the game just as much without it.

  • Truth

    Cool! Monster Dash is still my favorite pick-up-and-play game. I'll definitely be picking this up. Somehow though, I think something's still missing. I haven't seen the other weapons so hopefully they'll be fun too. Curious how the robot would look like.

  • http://blog.arenacreative.com/ Arena Creative Stock Imagery

    It's just the same as the old helicopter tunnel game, only remixed..

    • Gwet17

      If it's coming out in three months, hopefully that remix will be substantial and fun.

  • Steve

    Yeah Halfbrick isn't really reknowned for their original ideas. They're the game development equal of a clock with a radio in it.

    • Gwet17

      Fruit Ninja, correct me if I'm wrong, was utterly original on its launch. Although Barry Steakfries has not delivered anything unique, both of the games he stars in are really fun.

  • http://twitter.com/Black2key Black2key

    They should update Monster dash more .... D:

    • Truth

      I'm with you on that! Monster Dash needs an update!!! At least one new level, one new monster, and one new weapon! :-)

      • Federicofasce

        I'm with you on that, however, Dalton the awesome already took Monster Dash place on my phone.. :-))

  • yanhua wu

    88Amity2:

    Supra Skytop