Developer: Matthew Broerman
Price: $0.99 Download on the App Store
For those who might be tired of purposeful, challenging or mind-stimulating games and are looking for a bit of mindless interaction to support a mental checkout, Fly Paper! for iPhone fits the bill. A simple time killer that pits the player’s ability to fling sticky orange goo in an effort to take out swarms of animated flies against a countdown timer, Fly Paper! is truly mindless entertainment. The only real goal is to score as many points as possible before the timer runs out – an action that requires very little thought, just simple touch and swipe.
Fly Paper! has a simple premise and pretty much fail-proof controls. Swiping from where the orange blob of fly paper starts to anywhere else on the screen will cause it to stretch out and stick to the new spot. The more flies it comes into contact with, the more points you earn. Insecticide point bonus and time boost power-ups randomly fall into view as does a buzzing bee that takes away time. The longer you can keep the timer running, the longer you can aimlessly fling goo.
Keeping in mind that Fly Paper! is a game with fairly simple entertainment goals and personal attachment isn’t really necessary to be entertained, it isn’t hard to pick up on the basic value of a game like Fly Paper!. Random thoughtless swiping equals fly decimation and boredom release all at once. The animation and sound are charming and support the mood of a quick pick-me-up time waster. The fact that you don’t have to try hard to play is made better only by the fact that you can try for higher scores, more flies and bigger combos if you want. And if goals are necessary to the enjoyment factor, then no worries - high scores are saved.
If there’s any drawback to design, it stems from the pause button at the top right of the screen, which sometimes gets itself confused when the goo lands there. This minor flaw aside, the overall design is perfectly suited for the type of game it was intended to be. Fly Paper! is currently available for iPhone and touch, but an HD version for iPad is in the works. You might be able to catch more flies with honey than vinegar, but catching them with orange goo is certainly more entertaining – especially when you’re looking to kill a bit of time.