MonsterUp Adventures

Everyone loves that feeling when apps and games have updates available. We also love a great deal here and there. Today's app update roundup features a bit of both to round off our CES coverage (for Windows Phone Central anyway – the event continues). Head on past the break to see which apps and games are included in this roundup and what's new.

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We've just been informed that MonsterUp Adventures (www.monsterupgame.com), the popular platformer for Windows Phone, has had its price slashed to just $0.99. This is a perfect time to grab the title, which is available for both Windows Phone 7 and 8. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself in Trelloland and help out the cute, cuddly monsters of MonsterUp.

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MonsterUp has been around for as long as I can remember on Windows Phone. Paul reviewed it over two years ago to give you an idea. Since then, it’s received continued support from the developer in the form of updates and feature addictions. Its sequel, MonsterUp Adventures is even more addicting than the original and adds a story element to it. And now it’s free until Sunday.

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If there’s one thing we can count on from indie developer Karios Games, it’s frequent software updates. Karios’ standout jumping game MonsterUp Adventures has already received two substantial updates – one to ease the game’s difficulty and another that greatly improved its boss battles. One aspect of the game still needed tweaking though: its in-game purchases.  That’s just what the new version 1.4 update addresses – for Windows Phone 8 users.

Full update details and a slice of MonsterUp news after the break.

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Indie developer Karios Games is known for updating its games numerous times based on customer and reviewer feedback. Case in point: after our MonsterUp Adventures review ran recently, the developer immediately set about fixing some of the review’s criticisms. That update went live over the weekend. It fixes quite a few of our complaints, making a fine jumping game even better.

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Adapting console-oriented genres like platformers to mobile phones is no easy task due to the average phone’s lack of physical d-pad and buttons. Doodle Jump achieved great success from a combination of intuitive tilt controls and stripping down the platforming game to its bare essentials. Practically anyone could play it for a few minutes and come away satisfied, regardless of their gaming skills. Karios Games’ MonsterUp built on the Doodle Jump formula, adding multiple characters with unique special moves to the mix, but otherwise hewed closely to Lima Sky’s original game.

Did you ever wonder what this offshoot genre (often called jumping games rather than platformers) would be like if some of the traditional platforming elements like structured levels and bosses were put back in? The second MonsterUp title, MonsterUp Adventures, answers that question. It certainly provides more unique content than regular jumping games, but the combination of jumper and platformer doesn’t always gel as well as I’d have hoped.

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The original MonsterUp, an endless jumping game from Karios Games, received a ton of updates over its lifetime. Its sequel MonsterUp Adventures has long been due for an update, and now it’s finally gotten one. We’re pleased to have had a hand in the features list for this update, not unlike our contributions to the recent Gerbil Physics patch. That aside, this one in particular really tightens up MonsterUp Adventures and makes it a much more enjoyable game.

Check out our impressions and two scoops of MonsterUp Windows 8 news after the break.

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MonsterUp Adventures, sequel to the hit indie jumping game MonsterUp from Karios Games, is now available on the Marketplace. Even better, it’s free through Saturday! Time to start downloading if you enjoy platformers or games like Doodle Jump

We’ve been excited about Adventures since first learning about it way back in spring 2011. Karios has taken the endless jumping game formula and married with a more traditional and robust game structure. Players now venture across an island map, taking on individual stages rather than just endlessly jumping after a better high score. Stages last about 10 minutes apiece and have specific goals like collecting different numbers of gems along the way. A bar at the right of the screen shows progress so you can know when you’re getting close to the top. Check out our video preview to see how it all works.

Gems collected throughout your adventures can be spent on unlocking new characters and even a ringtone. Adventures also features a PDLC system in which players can purchase gems to hurry along the unlocking process. These optional code purchases must be made through the Karios website, which provides codes instantly upon purchase. Just input the code into the game and the shiny gems are yours.

The original MonsterUp (review) was the best endless jumping game on Windows Phone at the time of its release, and the same applies to the sequel as well. MonsterUp Adventures is a welcome advancement of the genre that should appeal to an even wider audience. Grab it here on the Marketplace while it’s free! After this weekend, the price goes back up to $1.99.

Update: The free offer has been extended to Monday morning.

Thanks to Matt C. for the tip!

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We've covered the popular "jumper" game MonsterUp previously on Windows Phone Central--published by Karios, the game features great music, bold, adorable graphics and interesting twists on an old concept. Though Doodle Jump gets the headlines, MonsterUp to us was always more creative. Now, Karios has returned with MonsterUp Adventures and we got a little sneak peek of the upcoming tile.

Instead of just a straight sequel i.e. yet-another-jumper, MonsterUp Adventures is more like a proper video game now. It features:

  • Levels you need to complete
  • Multiple "bosses"
  • Gems, jewels and coins to collect to unlock new monsters
  • A shop to purchase new monsters (who each have unique powers)

Whereas before the goal was to just jump as high as you can, now on each level you need to "jump to the end" to complete it. It takes anywhere from 5-10 minutes per level and yes, it's quite challenging at times (especially on the 2nd half of the island). The collecting of jewels to purchase new monsters is well done as it gives you motivation to try new combinations, plus it adds to the replay value.  The bosses, while not very difficult, add a nice break to the jumping and the exquisitely drawn and unique backgrounds keep the visuals fresh.

Sadly, MonsterUp Adventures as submitted to be an Xbox LIVE game but was denied by Microsoft. Like Karios, we're not sure what the criteria is for making into that coveted camp but compared to the last few stinkers on Xbox LIVE, MonsterUp Adventures more than makes the cut in our mind.

The plus side is MonsterUp Adventures will get to your phones sooner than if it were on Xbox LIVE and Karios can deliver more updates, more frequently.

So our verdict? We really like this game. Jumpers are fun but they can get old fast. Karios Games have taken that concept to a new level with 'Adventures, breathing new life into the growing franchise. With fantastic graphics, a catchy tune and high re-playablity we're impressed.

Look for MonsterUp Adventures to arrive in the Marketplace very soon. Check out the promo vid after the break...

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