In the 1980’s, there was a popular cartoon series featuring plenty of go go gadgets, Brain an intelligent dog who constantly saves the hero from his own clumsyness, a niece called Penny who strives to aid in the police investigations and the ever present arch-nemesis Dr. Claw. I am of course referring to the bizarre yet wonderful world of bumbling police detective Inspector Gadget.
Inspector Gadget is a cyborg policeman who conjures up various gadgets out of his incredibly resourceful body of gadgets. You find yourself skating along the rooftops of the city chasing Dr. Claw, who has kidnapped Penny. Along the way though are various hazards that will challenge your reactions and memory. Banana skins, birds, gaps between rooftops, speeding trains, bombs and other mischievous items and structures designed to sap away at your few remaining lives.
It is a case of remembering the layout of the path ahead, however mostly you will be jumping. Jumping is achieved by touching the screen and the longer you hold the press, the higher and further Inspector Gadget will leap. You will also need to swing and float depending on the problems that lay in wait. On the way you collect ‘Gadget Coins’ throughout the game which unlocks bonus content, which includes sound bytes from the original series, a puzzle, concept art and even a comic.
It provides a fairly interesting gameplay experience that is perfect for short blasts in-between the rigours of life. It won’t blow you away, however it won’t let you down either as you endeavour to reach ever further in the attempt to rescue Penny. The elements within the title that are there to prevent your progress are avoidable by timing your jumps correctly. These cues are offered by visual interpretation or by a sound of an incoming speeding train for example. Fail just once, and you lose a life – relying on your loyal dog Brain to bring you back into the chase.
As soon as you start the game, the extremely memorable theme music emanates from the device’s speaker, revealing a pleasurable grin on the player’s face. The same music unfortunately is played throughout the entire game, which although I love this music can become tiresome repeated over and over. Familiar sound clips also appear during gameplay, continuing the nostalgic drive this title represents. The artwork remains faithful to the original series and you can’t help but be dragged back in the 1980’s with the charm this era boasted in abundance.
Supporting Apple’s Game Center, you will be able to compare your best scores with your friends and this is where the challenge really occurs. There is nothing worse than having a chum of yours pounding your score, so you will inevitably take in a deep breath and settle down for another game of Inspector Gadget to wipe that smirk of their face.
It is certainly a trip down memory lane as the original music, sound snippets and design of Inspector Gadget and his fellow characters appear on the Apple iPhone and iPod Touch. Providing a challenge to the 80’s cartoon classics faithful by offering skating, jumping, floating and swinging through hazards along a route of mayhem. At the very least it provides a pleasant romp for individuals like myself who remember the original episodes and a fairly decent gameplay experience for those that love to challenge their friends high scores. Whether you will be shouting ‘I’ll get you Gadget’ with as much vigour as Dr. Claw is really up to you.
iTunes Store Link: Inspector Gadget’s MAD Dash