Are we tired of those mobile “runner” games yet? No? Okay, then let’s go ahead and play Monsters University. That’s right, Android Amusements has caught Monsters University fever and has decided to join in with Mike, Sully and Squishy as they take part in two not-so-endless runner mini-games.
I would have liked it better if Monsters University had instead offered mini-games from two different genres, but we have to make do with what we have for now. Disney is promising an update with more mini-games as time goes on, so perhaps we’ll see something different. I get the feeling we’ll get more not-so-endless runners like Catch Archie and Toxicity Challenge though, and more characters to unlock and play as.
Both Monsters University‘s Catch Archie and Toxicity Challenge games involve helping one of the three available monsters make it through 30 levels. In Catch Archie, players help a monster try to chase down an escaped Scare Pig mascot. Then, once the pig has been caught, the monster has to ride the pig to the finish line without falling off. The run is timed and obstacles get in the monsters’ way. The real trouble happens once the pig is caught, as falling off ends the game.
Toxicity Challenge is more of a traditional runner. The monster has to run through a sewer obstacle course while avoiding items and glow urchins. Touching an urchin slows you down and, if they are hit three times, the run is over. I have to admit that I was actually less impressed with this mini-game, as Catch Archie at least felt like it was trying to do something different with the runner genre. Toxicity Challenge is more of the same.
Each Monsters University mini-game has 30 levels, for a total of 60. As usual with mobile games, each level has a star rating depending on how quickly and accurately someone navigates the course. Later levels are naturally more challenging, but I never felt they were too difficult. I did have some trouble with the later levels of Catch Archie, but I actually found that refreshing, as too often these kinds of games can sometimes pander to their audience.
Also, Monsters University controls quite well. Players just have to swipe across the screen to move the monster of their choice and complete each course. I never had any issues where it didn’t recognize my command, so if I failed, it was all my fault.
And before you even ask, yes. There is an in-game cash shop option in Monsters University. You can spend real cash on in-game coins to buy boosters and such to make the runner games a little easier. It isn’t mandatory and I found I enjoyed the games just fine without contributing a little extra cash. The option is there though, and parents should take care to make sure kids don’t spend more money than the initial $0.99 it takes to actually buy the game.
I’m not going to lie. Right now, my go-to endless runner is either Despicable Me: Minion Rush on my tablet or Jetpack Joyride on my Vita. (Especially since both of those games are free-to-play.) Monsters University is fun and cute, and I really dig the Catch Archie mini-game, but it doesn’t dethrone my “top two”. If you’re a big Pixar fan, however, this $1 app will probably make your day.
Product Page [Monsters University]