The idea behind the TouchArcade Game of the Week is that every Friday afternoon we post the one game that came out this week that we think is worth giving a special nod to. Now, before anyone goes over-thinking this, it doesn’t necessarily mean our Game of the Week pick is the highest scoring game in a review, the game with the best graphics, or really any other quantifiable “best" thing. Instead, it’s more just us picking out the single game out of the week’s releases that we think is the most noteworthy, surprising, interesting, or really any other hard to describe quality that makes it worth having if you were just going to pick up one.
These picks might be controversial, and that’s OK. If you disagree with what we’ve chosen, let’s try to use the comments of these articles to have conversations about what game is your game of the week and why.
Without further ado…
Regular TouchArcade readers should not be surprised at all by this week’s pick for Game of the Week, Kumobius’s Bean Dreams ($2.99). We are massive fans of the original Bean’s Quest ($2.99), which seems like it released forever ago but it was actually just back in the summer of 2011. It took about 8 months following its release before several updates delivered the “full" Bean’s Quest experience, but once it was finished, it stood as one of the best platforming games on iOS. I’ve been eagerly awaiting the sequel, and Bean Dreams has not disappointed in the least.
Platformers on iOS can be tricky due to the touchscreen and the finicky nature of virtual buttons. With directional movement and whatever action buttons may be included, it can be difficult to manage a screen full of buttons when trying to accurately jump chasms and bop enemies on the head. A lot of platformers have streamlined the experience by making the character run automatically, spawning the “auto-running" genre of platformers. The Rayman Jungle/Fiesta Run games are excellent examples of this making for a great mobile platforming experience. Bean’s Quest streamlined the process in their game too, but rather than make the character run automatically, they made him jump automatically. It’s a subtle but profound change that worked incredibly well.
Bean Dreams continues the “auto-jumping" formula, but adds in some new twists. The biggest is the chili pepper which allows Bean to dash through the air, saving precious bounces for those shooting for the bounce par goal. In fact, the bounce par is one of the best aspects about Bean Dreams and Bean’s Quest. Both are games that would be fun for anyone to simply play through just to get to the end, but the really hardcore can focus on additional goals like collecting all the fruit in each level, finding every hidden axolotl, and shooting for the bounce pars on every level. It truly has mass appeal.
Bean Dreams is one of those games I love so much it’s hard to express properly in words. It feels like it could be a game from Nintendo with its colorful visuals, expertly-designed levels, and level of polish. It also feels like a game that fits the touchscreen and doesn’t have to make any compromises because of the platform it’s on. Both Bean’s Quest and Bean Dreams are games that will stay on my iOS device forever, and any platforming fan who hasn’t checked out either or both should give them a look.