On this site, I’ve talked a little bit about what I think makes for an enjoyable mobile gaming experience. I like colorful games with visuals that leave an impression, controls that take advantage of the hardware, and games that are still fun if you want to come back to them in short bursts. That’s why I’m happy to say that Pogo Bears by Appsolute and Hard Tap Games checks off all of these boxes fairly nicely.
You are a bear, and you have a pogo stick; that much should be obvious from the title. Your aim of the game is to get from one platform to the next, while avoiding the heightened protruded obstacle in your way. The entire game can be played with a single finger. By tapping the screen, players create the arc that will hopefully land them safely on the other side, releasing when it’s safe to go, and with another well timed tap in mid-air, the bear will do a little jump flip ensuring they make it safely over the pillar in the center.
And then the whole process repeats itself from there. Each screen is a little different, but you just bounce those bears until you miss a jump or bump into an obstacle.
You can collect red gems that occasionally hover above the pillar, which creates a very nice risk versus reward system for the game. It’s pretty easy to avoid the pillars, but if you want to get those gems, you have to bounce a bit closer to danger. These gems can help unlock new characters, which are more bears that are all cute and cartoony in their own way.
The sound design is very interesting. The background music sounds like carnival music from an indie horror film rather than a game about pogoing ursa, but it does work, even if I think it can get a little repetitive. While it’s not bad at all, the music may be the main reason I don’t recommend playing this game for longer periods. Also one of the sound effects that plays when you make a successful land… I know it’s from something, it sounds so familiar, but for the life of this reviewer, I couldn’t figure it out.
There is quite a bit to recommend about Pogo Bears. I love that the developers mixed up the environments when you play the game, so even though you reset, you feel like things are moving. The number of characters on offer to unlock gives players a reason to come back, the mechanics are simple, but effective for the title. If you’re a fan of arcade style games, I can’t think of a good reason not to give the game a shot, but it may not have lasting appealing for everybody.