The answer to the eternal question of what happens when a plane filled with crates of animals crashes has finally been answered by pioneering iOS developer TransGaming. The answer is found in Kula Blox [99c / HD], and apparently, in the event of an airborne disaster, animals feel the need to eat everything under themselves in the food chain on the way to the ground. Hey, it seems plausible.

You choose an animal to control and then use tilt or tap controls (or both) to move left or right, through the air, preying on any animals smaller than yourself, chasing them down if they try to flee. If you collide with a larger predator, you'll lose one of your three hearts (lives) for that fall. The more animals you eat, the larger and more dominant you become, as you move up the food chain.

This game currently has three worlds: Jungle, savannah and forest, with 12 airborne levels each (36 total) plus the standard note promising more levels in future. At the start of each level, you're given three goals to satisfy. For example, you may be asked to eat 10 frogs, 15 frogs and 50 monkeys. (At least, I think the green things are frogs.)

If you're an expert, you may be able to satisfy all three goals in one go, but that's not necessary, as you're able to complete each goal in a separate attempt. Each time you complete a goal, you earn a totem, with one totem unlocking the next level and three totems meaning all goals are satisfied for that level.

Initially you can only control a Jaguar, but later you unlock other predators, such as an eagle or cobra. Each animal has different abilities, like Cheetah Boost (speed), Cobra Sense (slow motion) and Panthergeist (pass through animals and obstacles), which you unlock as you progress. These powers are activated via icons on the screen.

There's also pick-up's to grab as you're falling, such as a tortoise shell (shield), parachute (slows descent) plus animal magnets and score multipliers. Or you can buy the pick-up's using money gained from the treasure chests you crash into, on the ground.

You're initially falling through the sky with clouds in the background, but as you descend, the background changes, introducing trees and cliffs which jut out, before you eventually hit into the ground and treasure chests.  Little birds display signs indicating the distance to the ground, so you know how much time you have left to satisfy the goals.

The developers advise the word "Kula" means "Eat" in Swahili, which ties in with the carnivorous theme. However, one user in the forums mentions that "Kula" is another word for "excrement" in Hungarian. Ironically, this game does actually feature some falling animal excrement, which should - as always - be avoided. And according to the developers interesting blog post about the development process, the game was almost called "Animal Droppings", which would have been an apt description.

Kula Blox is a simple game which is made more interesting by the "animal-eats-animal while falling" premise. There's not a lot of variety in the levels in terms of game-play, but it's a relaxing way to pass a few brainless minutes.

TouchArcade Rating

KULA BLOX Reviewed by Troy Woodfield on . Rating: 3.5