The mobile game…. it has to catch your interest fast…. like 30 seconds fast…. otherwise it becomes part of the click and delete pile of apps hanging out in the app store. No one has time for the complex tutorials that drag on or advanced gameplay controls. Gamers want quick and entertaining content.
Luckily the developers behind Slide the Shake realized this.
Slide the Shake comes from the Australian developer team Prettygreat, whose team includes the creator of Fruit Ninja and Jetpack Joyride. So if anyone is going to know how to get gamers interested to play in seconds, it’s going to be that guy.
Slide the Shakes is a game with simplistic rules, no tutorial and no complex button mashing required. Each level has a pre-defined amount of puzzle slides to complete (minimum of three) in order to complete the level.
The concept of the game is to slide milkshakes from one position to another pre-designated position specifically marked by a green area on a table without coming up too short or crashing over the side. If you slide too gently you will miss, if you slide too hard you will go off the table. If you slide just perfectly you will pass the level. Seems simple enough right?? Well yes the first few levels are easy with straight tables and large designation markers, but then the tables become different, such as half pipe shaped and or have gaps in them or even pink like bubble gum goo appears to slow down the milkshake. Adding to the complexity, the markers get smaller or oddly spaced, thus requiring better precision. This increase in difficulty occurs in a gentle manner as to not frustrate you and make you want to walk away from the game entirely, but keeps your attention to want to keep trying or even come back to it.
The game starts you off with a simple chocolate milkshake to slide, but every few levels, a new milkshake is unlocked (along with a physical recipe of making the drink). This new drink is used in the next several levels until another one is unlocked. You cannot choose which shake to use in a level (not that I think different shakes have any special abilities or ease of slide or anything…). Some of these drinks are actually quite delicious sounding such as the Neon Blue Raspberry (unlocked at level 50) or the Chilli Choc Blend (unlocked at level 61).
There are several ways that the game provides feedback on a slide bar to the player in terms of speed of the “slide” as they pull back on the screen to “charge the slide”:
- noise (like a rat-tat of a ratchet)
- colour change (blue to green to yellow to orange to red to purple)
- arrows (that speed up as you charge)
- camera zooms out in response to charge
This type of interaction with the player is like the games way of visually rewarding for playing the game. It makes the game engaging and tactile and truly shows that the developer understands how to utilize the touchscreen and how to benefit from the two way silent communication between player and game. It makes a player feel like the simple action of “pull back from anywhere and release” is meaningful.
Prettygreat has a deep understanding behind the emotions of failing. They made the delay between failure and restart as quick as possible. When you unsuccessfully slide a shake or it goes flying off the table, the game immediately says “What a shame, H. ave another” and it sets you back up in less than a second.
It provides a friendly “pick up and play” experience. It is quite an achievement in the market today to be able to develop a game that can stand out in the flood of gaming apps available these days. The funky jazz soundtrack and the constant manipulation to physics in the games makes for a continuous eye catching experience.
Slide the Shakes is an amazing game that requires as much or as little of your time as you have to play. It doesn’t need you to be constantly checking on it for background actions, or leader board competition…. it’s just pure entertainment. Though, the game has a strange definition of what a milkshake is, because some of the recipes look more like fancy Friday night drinks rather than a cool ice cream wonder. For example, at level 20, you are provided this lime drink that is made of lime mix and crushed ice and served in a martini glass…and this one is extremely complex to play with cause it has a horrible consistency to fall over and cause you to fail the level. Luckily it’s a rare “milkshake” to encounter. I find myself still going back to this game as a fun play during commutes to waste time as playing a few levels is enough satisfaction needed on a daily intake. I highly recommend downloading it and trying it out as it will definitely not disappoint, and with it being a free app, what do you have to lose??
This milkshake brings all the gamers to the yard! 🙂