Gaming, we are often told, is an increasingly mainstream activity. However, for all of the popularity of the latest Grand Theft Auto, Uncharted or Halo title, very few games truly cross over from gaming culture to the wider zeitgeist. One mobile title has transcended even this level of success and become a true modern day phenomenon and that is Poke A Mango by Cat Cup Games.
• Developer: Thomas Young
• Publisher: Cat Cup Games
• Reviewed on: iOS
• Also Available On: Android
• Release Date: Available Now
Widely reported as the most downloaded mobile app of all time Poke A Mango seems to have taken over not just the Twitter, Facebook, the rest of the internet and even the news but our entire culture. It seems almost impossible to escape the way this app dominates our society and, having downloaded the app last night, I am really not sure I can tell you why but I cannot stop playing.
At its most basic level Poke A Mango is a very simple game, you see a mango, you poke the mango and you get one point, poke it twice, get two points but poke something that is not a mango and it is game over. All of this is accompanied by an almost maddening Caribbean steel drum sound-track which seems specifically designed to increase the tension in the player, get stuck in your brain and instil deep resentment in anyone nearby who has to listen to it.
Much of the positive press around the app seems to be the way it encourages players to get out into the world and meet other players. This, I must admit, has me completely flummoxed as there is almost no social function to the game with a specific warning at the start to “Ignore your surroundings, focus only on the game”. Playing Poke A Mango while out and about can certainly have it’s dangers and the news is awash with stories of people getting themselves into trouble because they were not paying enough attention to their surroundings. My advice to these people would be play the game at home.
From what I have heard from other players there are some significant issues with Poke A Mango. Battery drain and data-usage are among the top complaints as well as server availability issues. I have to say, despite having heard these problems from so many people, I have not encountered any of them, the game has performed flawlessly.
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As simple as the game is, it is deeply compelling. You are always one poke away from disaster and the closer you get to your high score the greater the tension. If you want to be the very best like no one ever was, you will want to beat not only your own high score but everyone else’s and through iOS’s Game Centre and Google’s Play Services you can see what score the top players are getting (At time of writing I am 25th on the iOS leader board but I’m coming for you Kingsizaa!).
The app is available for free from iOS and Google stores so why not downloaded it today? Gotta poke em all!