Grinchmas [$1.99 - iTunes link] is a Christmas themed game designed by Oceanhorse Media. In the game, you get to choose if you play “Merry Grinch” or “Mean Grinch”. With the mean Grinch, you goal is to throw snowballs at the houses which are playing too much music (and thus bothering you). With the merry Grinch, you through presents at the houses (of matching color) trying to spread Christmas joy.
The games themselves are suitable for all ages, and my daughter had some fun trying them out. However, they do take a little bit of skill – hitting the houses with either the snowballs or the presents depends on your aim as well as the speed at which you throw (swipe your finger). Faster swiping means throwing the item farther (at the distant houses). It takes a little bit of practice to get it down pat.
Unfortunately, that’s where the game ends. The merry Grinch game is based on how many packages you can throw in a certain time limit. The mean Grinch game is based on how many houses you can silence (how long you can last) before your patience wears out. As such, both games are similar to each other. It would be nice to see a couple of different KINDS of games between the two options. In addition, while there is a nice soundtrack (or rather, music and sound effects), there is nothing else enticing. I would have loved to see some cut scenes (maybe from the TV special), some spoken lines to the TV special, some sort of bonus features (maybe Max appears, maybe some houses are worth more, etc). As it is, playing the game a few times is fun, but the novelty wears off rather quickly. The simplicity of the games is both good (easy to pick up) and it’s downfall (gets boring relatively fast).
All in all, the game is nice holiday themed fun, and if you have kids they may enjoy playing the Grinch. For $1.99, the price isn’t too bad, but don’t expect something you will be able to play for a long time, or something that has a high replay level. The game might help you get in the Christmas mood, but if you are looking for a detailed, complex, or long lasting game you will probably end up with a mean Grinch face. Three and a half out of five stars.
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