One thumb gaming is as important to iPhone game design as it is to mobile. Whether you're on the bus, walking down the street or driving down the outside lane of the motorway at 90MPH, ultra-simple controls are a must.
[Editor's note: Pocket Gamer does not endorse the use of an iPhone whilst driving.]
Thankfully, they don’t come much simpler than Sneezies, which limits play to a single tap per level.
The screen begins with coloured Sneezies floating around the screen in bubbles. You’re given one opportunity to free as many of these fluffy little critters as possible by touching the screen and activating a small, dust-filled cloud.
Any Sneezies that make contact with the quickly-diminishing swirl of allergenic particles sneeze, bursting their bubbles and allowing them to parachute to freedom. As a result, a similar vapour cloud dissipates around them, causing any other Sneezies coming into contact with this repeat cloud to also ah-choo.
The result is a cascade of sneezing fur balls, and it’s all thanks to the strategic placement of your original puff of dust. Each level requires you to free a minimum number of Sneezies. Therefore, the challenge comes in meeting that quota.
Because the system of swirling Sneezies is in constant flux, gaps can appear and bring your cascade to a premature halt.
The limited premise makes Sneezies sound prohibitively boring, which belies the inexplicable addictive quality of the game. It’s one of those titles that you play casually only to notice an hour or more has disappeared in a cloud of fuzz balls.
Just as repetition creeps in, a second mode of play shakes things up. Instead of requiring you to meet a minimum quota, this mode involves you using a limited number of touches to free an ever growing number of Sneezies from their spherical cages.
The omission of motion controls does feel like a missed opportunity. You'll shake and tilt your handset with the expectation of movement the first time you play, but alas there's none.
That Sneezies makes no use of the motion sensing system costs it a higher mark, yet there’s no denying the raw addictiveness of the game as it is.