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Gameplay will mostly be the same as the original game. The main difference is the controls. Because iOS devices don't have keyboards, the character will be controlled via on-screen buttons. The game also will support an iCade controller and Game Center. It will run at 60 frames per second, unlike the online version which runs at around 30 frames per second. The game will also include "slow motion". This could mean the frame rate will not drop when playing in slow motion. The slow motion will also include slowed down sounds.
Characters and levelsThe game will launch with 6 available characters: Wheelchair Guy, Segway Guy, Irresponsible Dad, Effective Shopper, Moped Couple and Pogostick Man. More characters will be added later on as updates. Every character will have its own "chapter" that has 10-15 levels designed specifically for that character, but there will be additional levels that can be played with any of the available characters. You will be able to play these main levels offline, unlike the browser version which is only available through Internet access.
The level editor will be a simplified version of its browser counterpart. Currently, many items and tools from the browser version are confirmed to be added, but some of them won't be added within the initial version. Levels can be saved locally on the device or shared via email or Airdrop. A public level browser similar to the browser version is planned to be added later on.
The iOS version will probably work with the following Apple products:
- iPhone 4S, 5, 5C, 5S, 6, 6+. (works on iPhone 4 as well, but there's a drop in framerate)
- iPod Touch 5th generation (like the iPhone 4, it will install on iPod Touch 4th, but will probably run slowly)
- iPad 2, 3, 4, Air.
- iPad Mini 1, 2
Jim and Jason have decided that the game will cost $2.99 on the App Store, but will be on sale for $1.99 the first couple of days after launch. However, Jason said in a reply that they haven't ruled out the possibility of releasing a free version of the game with IAP (In-App Purchases), since they realize they may have many fans that can't buy anything.
A playable demo of the game was available at PAX East 2013. The demo contained a small amount of levels and a limited amount of characters (Wheelchair Guy, Segway Guy, Irresponsible Dad, Effective Shopper, Moped Couple, and Lawnmower Man).
In response to a tweet regarding controller support, Fancy Force responded with "I will add support for the iOS game controllers. It currently supports iCade's 8-Bitty controller (sadly out of stock now)."
An Android version has been confirmed, but very little information about it has been released. However, Jim and Jason have tested an Android port and said the results were promising and are planning on continuing the Android version when the iOS version is complete.
Geek Insider Interview
Geek Insider has interviewed Jim and Jason here. In the interview, Jason explains converting flash to iOS as "It has been very difficult. Putting aside things like developing touch controls and the physical limitations of mobile devices, simultaneously converting and updating the code as well as converting the assets from Flash has been a big undertaking. And like all other projects, a million other unexpected issues have come up."
Jason also describes the success of the mobile app being "The mobile space looks rife with opportunity. However, there is a saturation of 2D racing games currently in the app store. Plus, the casual gaming community is becoming more and more used to using one finger to play games. That said, I think our game is unique enough to attract new fans in addition to those who migrate from the online game. In other words, I see it being very popular."
A question was also asked about his opinion about paid vs free app models, Jason replies "Consumables–items that can be bought and then used up–annoy me, specifically in-game currencies (be it coins, berries, donuts, etc.) which are required to achieve certain goals that can’t otherwise be done through game play. It obscures the actual cost of a game. It’s great for capitalism, but it often seems unfair. The freemium model doesn’t bother me when the cost to value ratio is very clear. And because of competition, many developers will over-deliver free content. To some extent, it balances out the effect of the money vampire apps."