Sunday, 13 September 2009

UpThere, Veiled Games

One of the first apps I ever heard about, UpThere is actually quite esoteric. The first screen shows a Victorian room, decorated with curliqued window decorations and ornate wallpapers. A round cage contains a red balloon that bounces madly around, desperately trying to escape. Press Start and the balloon begins its ascent into the worlds above, trying to maneuver through book shelves, rat mazes, etc. - accompanied by a falsely soothing song.

Your job is to tilt the phone to and fro, guiding the balloon on its increasily speedy journey. If you get to the bottom of the screen, you've timed out. A clock keeps track of the time in corner of the screen, which inexplicably gets your heart racing. Great for older children, although little ones can figure it out as well (there's an Easy/Hard setting).

You'll like it because: It's elegant, unexpected, slightly strange and unique.
Too bad: It is either repetitive or addictive, depending on your mindset.
iPhone Apps users gave it 3/5 stars
Cost: £0.59
Ages: 4-8

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