Today's law enforcement officers have many tools at their disposal for catching bad guys. Tasers, handguns, tear gas, forensic investigation, DNA testing, and more are used to their utmost effectiveness to keep normal citizens like you and me safe from nefarious fellows. Vigilantes, too, have their tricks, whether it's martial arts skills, expensive tank cars, or goopy web fluid. However, some criminals are so devious that they fall between the cracks of the police and superheroes. The secret to stopping them is known only to two entities: Macaulay Culkin and the developers of Get Fiquette [$1.99].
The villainous Fiquette is on a robbery tour of the United States, stealing bags of money and making clean getaways using his personal hot air balloon fleet. The police are doing their utmost to catch him, but he has cheetah-like speedy and agility, and left unchecked, he will escape them every time. That's where you come in, crimefighter. To reach his hot air balloon's landing area, Fiquette has to make his way through some very busy neighborhoods. These neighborhoods are full of all kinds of heavy objects that become useful weapons in your hands. Your goal is to drop everything that isn't bolted down onto the head of Fiquette, trying to deplete his life bar before he reaches his balloon. Dropping them is as easy as tapping them, but you have to time it just right if you want them to hit Fiquette during his advance.
There are 20 stages in total, and each one adds a new piece to the chaos. Some of the new objects can damage Fiquette, others can damage you by taking away some money, and the rest simply give you extra opportunities to earn coins. Fiquette's life bar also increases as you go along, so most of the stages on the back end really require you to nail him with a majority of the stage's objects to take him down in time. Many of the objects you'll need to use are hidden behind the windows of the buildings on the street. You can tap them to open them up, but you'll find unpleasant surprises almost as often as good things behind them. Some of them can be tapped again to spare you from harm, while others need to be left alone. This frantic work of tapping around, identifying what needs to be tapped again, all while trying to time your drops to hit Fiquette makes for a pretty busy play experience.
Hitting Fiquette causes coins and other valuables to fly out, which you can collect by tapping on them in the air. You'll also find these items when you open windows or tap on certain objects. These coins can be used to unlock new, heavier, more effective items that will appear in the stages randomly once you've bought them. You can also use your coins for single-use items with extra punch by tapping a button at the top of the play area, which is very useful when you can't quite seem to uncover enough items on your own. The game offers a pretty cheap doubler and a stack of coins as IAPs, but I was able to unlock pretty much everything on one playthrough, so you almost certainly don't need either. It's mostly a cosmetic thing past a certain point, as it's pretty funny seeing various objects fall on Fiquette's noggin.
Get Fiquette has a really great presentation style. The art, sounds, and the designs of Fiquette and the other characters all have a great old-timey feel to them. Fiquette looks like the slightly classier cousin of Snidely Whiplash, and a lot of the other character art seems inspired by classic designs from Rocky & Bullwinkle and friends. As the star, it's important for Fiquette to have a lot of personality, and thanks to a lot of cute details in his animation, he's more than up to the task. I love how he stops cold when he sees a poster of a beautiful woman and takes a few seconds to admire it. He's in a rush, but he's always got time for the ladies. The music accompanying the game is a piano piece that sounds like the background music of a silent comedy. The final touch is a filter placed over the whole game to make it look like an old film.
It's not a very deep game, and once you get the hang of it, you'll probably plow through the entirety of Get Fiquette in a couple of hours. For your trouble, you'll unlock a new difficulty mode that really ramps things up, but you'll still be treading the same ground as before. A lot of the game's charm comes from the silly sight gags that crop up as you play, and they do lose some impact after the first time you've seen each of them. The game is also a bit buggy and crash-prone, especially on older devices. This probably isn't a game you'll be keeping forever, but it does make for a pretty fun evening or two, and for the price, that's not too bad. It's not hard to see how it's winning over people in our forums. It's goofy and shallow in just the right measures, and it completely owns its chosen style. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go drop a piano on these kids that have been leaving garbage in my bicycle's basket.
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