Swing the Bat capitalises on simplicity and charm to keep you coming back to this endless game. Of course we’ve seen it before in other forms – such as Tiny Wings – but that fortunately doesn’t distract from the fun.
In the primary game mode, Dusk ’til Dawn, you must swing from tree to tree as daybreak chases you, through the use of your elastic leg. And once it catches up to you, you fall asleep and the game is over. As you’re swinging through the areas of forest, cave and fire cavern you gain points depending on how far you travel, but a set of pesky animals are out to get your poor bat. Pandas and monkeys cling to trees and throw things at you to stall your momentum, as well as other bats branding baseball bats to impede you even more. Additionally there’s a hungry tiger skulking around on the forest floor waiting to give you the good news with his sharp teeth. It sure is a dangerous place for this young bat. Fortunately you can use your wings to gain a significant boost to your distance by collecting fruit as you swing along.
The second mode, Night Fire, has you once again swinging with the intension of gaining distance, but instead of sun light you’re being chased by a raging fire. But distance alone won’t save you from the flames; you will also need to knock over buckets of water to slow the fire’s spread.
Mechanically all this swinging couldn’t be simpler. You touch the screen to shoot out your elastic leg, and touch again to release. The trick is to time your swing to gain the most distance or best direction for collecting fruit, and an onscreen curve will help guide you on best swinging practices. It’s simple, easy to pick up and tons of fun.
You also gain awards in the form of clothing for your bat by completing specific challenges, such as performing a 360 degree swings, hitting the skybox, etc. It adds that little extra purpose to the endless setup that encourages replay marvellously.
Swing the Bat is yet another example of a simple idea working marvellously. It’s enjoyable and compelling, and although it’s not the most original idea on iOS it’s charm maintains your interest.
MLG Rating: 8/10
Platform: iPhone, iOS Release Date: 05/09/2011
Disclosure: Midlife Gamer were provided a digital copy of Swing the Bat for review purposes by the promoter. The title was reviewed over the course of one week on an iPhone. For more information on what our scores mean, plus details of our reviews policy, click here.