VIDEO GAMING

Game review: Ketchapp Winter Sports – all you need for a great little free smartphone experience

Snowboard, ski, skate, and slide your way through various challenges and obstacle courses – and compare your progress with your friends

PUBLISHED : Monday, 20 February, 2017, 8:03pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 21 February, 2017, 10:32am

Ketchapp Winter Sports

Ketchapp

4/5 stars

Mobile gaming hasn’t quite reached the level where ambition and creativity are requirements for a successful release. Simplicity is still key, partially due to the limitations of the technology, but also because mobile gamers mostly aren’t that sophisticated and don’t have much time.

But looking back to old-school releases is often a successful approach, and developer Ketchapp is one that has basically cornered the market using that philosophy. Stack, Jump, Hop, Crazy Circle, Bottle Flip!, Hat Trick Shots – even the names of its many games are minimalism defined, and the popularity of its Summer Sports package has inevitably led to a winter version.

On the surface, it’s pretty much the same game with a frosty outlook, but noticeable improvements have been included. You’ll snowboard, ski, skate and slide your way through various challenges and obstacle courses, before collecting a series of gems that can be traded in for improved skills.

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Timing is everything in this game. Although at first you’ll be tapping your screen non-stop to gain access to the later levels, it soon becomes obvious that this approach won’t get you all the way. Finding your rhythm is essential to success and through trial-and-error you’ll find your footing as you flip, screech, grind and dive your way through its many levels.

Challenges are set through trophies awarded, and the chase for the perfect number of taps or the farthest distance flown becomes addictive when you start comparing scores not just with the global rankings but also fellow friends who’ve installed the game.

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The overall sheen of Ketchapp’s games is one of their biggest draws and the bright and bubbly graphical approach of Winter Sports contrasts cartoonish sportsmen against modestly layered snow-capped backgrounds. It’s easy on the eyes, and ideal for playing at any time of the day.

Ketchapp has all but defined the mobile market, and while Winter Sports isn’t as groundbreaking or even as addictive as their summer offering, the game does offer everything you need for a great little free smartphone experience.