Jeff Weber’s Just Ski ($1.99) is easily one of the most interesting games I’ve played on iOS over the past year, which may sound surprising for anyone who has not given it a go yet. While its hyper-minimalist aesthetic design and skiing mechanics we’ve already seen perfected in games like Alto’s Adventure ($4.99) may make Just Ski not seem particularly distinctive, the developer’s emphasis on realistic physics created what others may call the Dark Souls of the skiing game genre. Joking aside, such a lazy descriptor detracts from the fact that Just Ski’s nuanced mechanics were immensely satisfying to nail down, and success or failure was entirely down to the player. For the first time, Just Ski is now available for free for a limited time only, which serves as a perfect excuse to get back onto the pistes and promptly crash to your inevitable alpine death.
I don’t want to start throwing around sweeping simplifications declaring that Just Ski is a hard game, or an inaccessible game – while it may be easier to pick up Alto’s Adventure and go on an epic run first time, Just Ski can be conquered through extra care on positioning and considering for its physics. However, it does have a bit of a learning curve, and the developer released a video shortly after the game’s release that helps give any budding skiers the skills they need to survive. If you do adapt to its unique mechanics, Just Ski is the definition of catharsis. If you don’t, well, all you’ve lost is a few minutes of your time considering the fact Just Ski is free for a limited time. Before the price reverts back to its usual $0.99 next week, download Just Ski for absolutely nothing on the App Store today, and let us know your thoughts on our forum thread.