As happy as it makes me to see how far the iOS platform has come in adapting to more traditional gaming tropes, there’s really nothing I love more than coming across a game that utilizes controls and mechanics that feel completely organic to the touch screen. Such is the case of Foodies [99¢], the first iOS game from indie developer Nano Titans and one that I had never even heard of before until it popped up in the App Store just a few hours ago.

Foodies is a story of two squishy, uh, creature... things named Sam and Pam. They are madly in love and Sam proposes marriage to Pam, but there’s a problem. Pam likes a man with some meat on his bones (if these things have bones, that is), and she has given Sam one week to gain some weight before she’ll agree to get married. All that’s left for Sam to do now is eat everything in sight.

The unique control mechanic in Foodies is a big part of what I like so much about the game. Placing two thumbs on the screen will create a line in between them. Sam will drop into a level from the top of the screen and you’ll use this created line to bounce and push him around each level, collecting the various types of food and avoiding hazards.

The 80 levels in Foodies are also very creative. Some have you simply collecting all the food on the screen, sometimes with a time limit or only a certain number of bounces to accomplish the task. Other levels require only collecting certain kinds of food (like healthy stuff) while avoiding the rest (like junk food). Oftentimes there are obstacles to deal with too, like buzz saws that will kill you or barriers that must be bashed into several times to get past them.

Foodies also contains the ever-important 3 star rating system for each level, though in this case it’s actually a 3 candles on a cake rating system. You’re scored on the treats that you munch during a level, how long it takes you to complete it, and how many bounces you needed.

This brings me to my one problem with Foodies, and that is that it seems incredibly difficult to earn 3 candles for many of the levels. I’ll feel like I completed one as quickly and efficiently as possible, but when my score is tallied up I’ve barely earned enough for 1 or maybe 2 candles. This isn’t a huge issue and it’s possible there’s some aspect to the scoring that I’m missing, but it’s really the only thing in the game that had me scratching my head.

Check out this extensive video from the developer that gives a taste of the mechanics and many of the level types in Foodies (actual gameplay starts at 1:29):

Besides the tiny scoring quibble, Foodies is an extremely entertaining game. The two-thumbed control scheme is incredibly intuitive to use, and with a bit of practice, you’ll be bouncing Sam around expertly in his quest for increased caloric intake. The 80 included levels will take some time to work through, not to mention trying to earn 3 candles for each, and they get quite challenging and complex in the latter half of the game. I’d love to see some more levels released in future updates, as well as achievements to go along with the already included Game Center leaderboard for total score.

If you’re looking for a new gaming fix that’s different from what’s already out there, plus has charming visuals and plenty of content, then definitely give Foodies a look. I was surprised by just how much I immediately enjoyed the game, and players in our forums seem to be loving it as well.

TouchArcade Rating

StarStarStarStarNone
  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dimitris-Katsafouros/666754640 Dimitris Katsafouros

    Ha hahahah!! looks like real fun.
    Downloading as we speak!

  • kel

    Im a perfectionist. I hate losing. But from the game play is. It seems hard. Just like gear where i couldnt get highest score. I can play a while but this type of games im weak at!!

  • Bart / Nano Titans

    Hi! Thanks for great review :)
    Regarding the scoring system, we designed 3-candle system for the gamers who like challenges. Casual gamers can still play paying no attention to them. As a tip, I may reveal the secret that the quicker you are and the less bounces you use, the more points you get.
    Have fun with Foodies! :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/jaison13 Jaison Corleone

      is the game really universal? it say compatible with iphone, touch and ipad but is it native full screen on the ipad? i've bought cool looking games like liqua pop and load it onto my ipad and it's the size of the iphone in the center of my big ipad screen.

      • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

        It is not universal. It will run on the iPad in 2x mode, but the way the controls are it would be really awkward to play on the iPad.

  • backtothis

    Thanks for another interesting casual game. Nice review.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jaison13 Jaison Corleone

    can touch arcade PLEASE say in each review whether a game is truly universal, ipad only, iphone only, or fake universal where it works on the ipad but only in doubling mode!!! honestly my iphone is pretty much a phone now and i do most of my gaming on my ipad 2.

    • http://twitter.com/JaredTA Jared Nelson

      The tags at the top indicate whether a game is for iPad or not, and the link at the bottom will say "Universal" in parentheses if it's universal.

      • http://www.facebook.com/jaison13 Jaison Corleone

        some games work on the ipad and say so in itunes but aren't really. aqua pop for one!

      • Guest

        Hey Moron, if it's for the iPad only, it says that. If it's universal, it says that also. If it's designed for the iPhone/iPod Touch, but not universal, then there is no tag in parenthesis after that. Learn how to read.

  • Bart / Nano Titans

    It's game for all iPhones and iPod Touches. We are currently thinking about iPad version.

    • Anonymous

      But the question is; as a separate download? Or as an 'upgrade' to this version.
      Ideally; I only want to have to manage one app per title, so if you release an iPad version, please ensure it comes with iPhone compatibility.
      But then; is there anything to justify an iPad version, as opposed to simply expanding this app? There are examples where the larger screen creates a fundamental change in gameplay and control, but aside from making it 'native', I can't see any major changes that would occur here.

      • Bart / Nano Titans

        We would like to release iPad version as an Universal App but it is mostly dependent on the fact whether the 1:1 transfer will still be playable. Maybe we well have to make some gameplay changes, and redesing the levels. I think that the question will be answered in a couple of days/weeks when we finish testing the prototype thoroughly.
        We really care for the fact that the iPad version is as playable as the one for iPhone.

  • Anonymous

    Wow. That's comprehensive. And not just the video!
    I love the way there's a simple solid mechanic at the heart, then all the extra bits the 'inspired' levels add just work with it.
    And the animation / character is perfect!

  • Anonymous

    Very impressed with the video. The diversity and attention to detail on each level looks great. I will pick this up tonight and give it a whirl.

  • Anonymous

    Very impressed with the video. The diversity and attention to detail on each level looks great. I will pick this up tonight and give it a whirl.

Foodies Reviewed by Jared Nelson on . Rating: 4