Today I wanted to share a casual arcade game where you try to avoid getting squished by all the feet walking on screen. How long can you keep Jonah alive?
Run Jonah Run is from the developer team JO.DA Brothers and it was originally brought to my attention by someone in the /r/Android subreddit. Forgive me for not remembering exactly who it was. I just went to search for that submission and it is no longer there. The game isn’t going to win any awards but it was pretty enjoyable for the few hours that I did play it.
The game is quite simple. The goal is to control Jonah the snail and prevent him from being squished by the dozens and dozens of feet that walk across the screen.
The game uses virtual buttons and while that is ok, I would rather see something like Leo’s Fortune where one half of the screen represents a button. The turbo buttons would need to be reworked but I think that would be better than forcing the players to use those tiny arrow buttons on the left and right. Not that those are bad in any way, I just think the other way would be better.
As you’re playing the game, you’ll come across some leaves that you can pick up and eat. Jonah can only hold three leaves at a time so if you have already collected up three of them then you might as well use your special move before you pick up anymore because those will be wasted. So after you pick up three leaves, the Sprint and Go Back buttons light up. These are positioned to the left and right of your movement buttons that I showed you earlier. Once you tap on one of these buttons Jonah will eat three leaves and he will move faster for a short amount of time. This won’t make you over powered or anything but it does add a little depth to the game.
You’ll also come across a bubble that can be picked up. Just like the leaves, the bubble will sit inactive until you choose to use it. Activating the bubble will give you a short period of invulnerability until it goes away. I didn’t count how long the bubble stays active but it is only a few seconds. If I remember correctly, the bubble doesn’t even pop if you get stepped on. But I could be wrong.
When you start a game you have the ability to play during the day or during the night. I don’t think it changes any of the gameplay elements but it will change the color of the scenery. This isn’t really a big deal but it does create a nice aesthetic to the game. I actually prefer the looks of the nighttime scenery but I could see it making it harder since you blend into the ground more than during the day.
Run Jonah Run has three difficulty levels: Easy, Normal and Poor Snail. Easy is just as it says and it is a nice way to get accustomed to the gameplay. You’ll most likely die a few times the first time you jump into the game, even if it is on Easy(at least I did). It took me a little bit to correctly gauge how long the people’s strides were, how fast/slow Jonah was, etcetera. Normal is basically the same as Easy, just with more people walking around. Poor Snail makes it fairly difficult as you aren’t allowed to go backwards like you are before. Pressing the back button in the hardest difficulty will just make Jonah pause as the scrolling of the level continues.
Run Jonah Run was a pretty fun game and I could see some children really enjoying the game. It’s easy enough to pick up and just play, but difficult enough to make you think about your next move ahead of time. It would be great as a little time waster while you are standing in line or waiting for something. The game is free to play and you’ll just see a banner ad about every other death. And speaking of deaths, the sound effect the developers picked out for when Jonah gets squished is perfect.
Let me know what you think of Run Jonah Run if you get a chance to try it out.