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Icy Tower

From the Database of Home of the Underdogs

GAME DESIGNER:Johan Peitz

GAME DEVELOPER:Free Lunch Design

GAME PUBLISHER:Freeware

Copyright 2001, Free Lunch Design

Hope you’re hungry, ‘cos this is one tasty free lunch. Harold wears a hat and has a lot of time on his hands. He finds a really, really (infinitely, in fact: doesn’t the mind boggle?) tall tower with regularly spaced platforms and, instead of assuming ownership and getting rubes to pay to see this marvel of architecture, he decides jumps up it to impress some nondescript ‘hood dudes. And they ain’t no sissy aerobic hops, neither, he’s goin’ all the way with his spinning, sparkling leaps, even going “Wooooo!” a lot.

To quote the readme.txt, “Ey, dis seems like a cool place to hang out in.” And indeed Icy Tower is. Simply, Harold can jump. Every time he jumps up to the next platform, he gets a measly ten points. Run him up to a good speed and he can jump higher. Make him fall below the screen, and he be dead. Jump up multiple platforms and you start off the combo metre. If you wait too long and the meter runs out, or you fall back down a stage, or just make a simple one-up jump, it’s gone. Make another multiple jump in the time, though, and you get a combo score. Keep on running fast, jumping high, and comboing and the impressive sound effects intone “Good” or “Sweet”. (Note: The game comes with low quality, low size sound effects (11kHz), but you can download better quality sound files from the Icy Tower homepage (22 or 44kHz). In this review I was using the 22kHz sounds.)

Not since the chef in Out To Lunch has a little, hatted, jumping game character been so charismatic (although in this case less aromatic). From the musically raspy title to Harold’s hat, from his starry-spinning powers to his tinny scream of terror as he falls below the screen, Icy Tower exudes a sweet, sticky substance. I reckon that substance is class, and it has way more of it than I thought a small freeware game really could.



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