Review Escape From Rio - Blue Birds
Fly carefully through the rainforest
Author: Tariq Abdulla
Date: 14 May 2017, tested on HTC One S
Completely free, unusual game design, decent graphics
Pushy ads and in app purchases, inconvenient controls
Escape from Rio: the Adventure for Android puts you in control of a blue macaw flying through amazonian rainforest. You can chose from a variety of control methods including an on-screen joystick, D-pad, and separated arrow keys. You will need to change the control method, because bizarrely the game starts with gyroscope control as the default. This is the one control method that is completely unusable. To begin with I thought this game was unplayable, as I crashed into a tree immediately every time. But with any of the other control methods selected, you have.... well... a lot more control!
There's a lot of obstacles to avoid, including trees, other birds, and swinging logs. It's not always that easy to tell what you collided with. There's also lots of coins to collect. When you crash (when, not if) you can rescue your bird to carry on going. The first time in a run it is 200 coins, but this increases exponentially for each additional time you rescue the bird in that run. Coins can also be used to buy new birds, and for all sorts of other upgrades.
The ads in Escape from Rio are pretty annoying, but it's the in-app purchases that really take the biscuit. You can play the game without them, but they are pushed at every opportunity, and I feel like it ruins the game experience.
That said, underneath all the junk, Escape from Rio is not a bad game. It's responsive (once you've set the controls to something sensible) and the way of being able to fly forwards and backwards is quite original. The graphics are very pretty, with atmospheric weather effects. The landscape changes as you work through levels, and each level is not too long. It's like they made a good game, and then ruined it with ads and in-app purchases.