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iPhone Game of the Day: Mos Speedrun is like Super Meat Boy with a timer... and zombies

On iPhone
Mos Speedrun
Price: $1.99
Get it now on iTunes:US/UK

On iPad
Mos Speedrun
Price: $1.99
Size: 12.9MB
Get it now on iTunes:US

You know that feeling you used to get as a kid when you played a really tough sidescroller on your NES and you died over and over trying to work out how to best defeat each level of the game? And after your thirtieth try on the same level where something seems to kill you no matter how hard you try to memorize the pattern, you had the distinct desire to rip the cartridge out of the system and stomp on it repeatedly before throwing it out the window? That's great, because you're going to need those skills you developed way back then if you expect to make it anywhere in Mos Speedrun.

Mos Speedrun is going to appeal to those with a taste for both retro and hardcore gaming, so if those are your bag, keep on reading. In the game, you play the role of Mos, a sweet little insect girl whose goal is to run through the levels of the game as quickly as possible. Sounds like a piece of cake until you factor in things like pointy bushes that can kill you, sharp drops, fireballs, zombies and more. Don't forget, each level is a speedrun too, so despite all of these factors, you're trying to make it to the goal quickly. Maybe now you can see why we're saying that there could be a frustration factor at work here?

The levels are fairly short, and each challenges you in a variety of different ways. As you go through each, you must collect coins. You can finish a level without collecting all the coins in it, but it improves your final rating if you do snag them all. In addition to this, each level has a standard speedrun time, which enables you to gain the hourglass icon at the end of each level if you can attain it. You also have the option of looking for a special skull coin in each level, which is cleverly hidden, so you'll have to go out of your way to dig it up. The game offers several different ways to play, but completionists are going to be all over those little extras. Our favorite detail was the "ghosts" of your previous runs -- each time you die, you see the ghost of your past tries at the same time you play the current level. You can turn this off if you find it distracting, but it also really helps when it comes to not making the same mistake twice.

Mos Speedrun is Game Center compatible, so you can track your own scores and those of your friends there. You can also hit the stats button in the menu to see how many times you've jumped, drowned, died, and how many items and skulls you've collected and more. You know, if you're feeling really obsessive on the details. Let's not forget a nice little chiptune soundtrack, and Mos Speedrun keeps you shaking your booty while you have fun and keep Mos moving as fast as you can.

To some, frustration means challenge, and to others, it just means a non-enjoyable gaming experience. If you don't like a stiff challenge, Mos Speedrun may not be the game for you, but if you have a soft spot for those old days of retro difficulty, we think it's just what the doctor ordered. And at a much lesser price than what you'e used to paying for a prescription, too!

Apr 27, 2011