Some developers are too wilful for their own good. It's an apt description of UK/Swedish outfit ustwo, which has released a series of games based around dots, each created within 48 hours.
The first Dot was originally titled purely with a '.', something proven not to be valid search term on the App Store.
The third game in the planned series of six can be found as Dotdotdot, although it would have been satisfying for it to have be defined as an ellipsis, the three dots that stand for the omission of words when you're quoting from a text.Drop the dot
Title aside, Dotdotdot is conventional in terms of gameplay. Taking the Doodle Jump formula, turning it upside down, and stripping away the colour, theme, and character, it's a high score game in which you have to drop a dot into a slot in a never-ending series of horizontal layers.
Encouraging you to keep on the move, the playing area is continually moving upwards towards two set of spikes at the top of screen. If they touch your dot it's Game Over.
As you tilt your device to move the dot, so it drops down whenever you successfully align it with an opening below. Each layer moves laterally as well, making it a challenging act of moving your ball and lining it up with recesses that oscillate from side-to-side.
The result is that you end up softly rocking your iPhone from side to side, building up a rhythm that hopefully will have you dropping your dot quickly down through each sequential layer.
Of course, it's not all that simple, as missing a slot because you tilted a bit too quickly and now have to reverse means you will have broken your rhythm, which can be fatal. In addition, some layers move contrary to what you expect.
What keeps you playing Dotdotdot, however, is that even when it seems your dot is about to be spiked, you can pull off a couple of quick moves to gain relative safety again. Yet with only eight layers on-screen at any time, the gameplay is always frantic because you're never more than a couple of seconds from danger.
Extending the pressure, OpenFeint, Facebook, and Twitter are available for you to promote your high scores and compare with friends and rivals.
Perhaps the most wilful element of Dotdotdot, however, is that despite its addictive nature ustwo has kept to its original 48 hour design and hasn't attempted to expand the game's appeal.
The audio is excellent, in terms of the beepy and pingy sound effects, as is the simple user interface. The black, white and grey colour scheme, however, is an acquired taste. If you're prepared to play in monochrome, Dotdotdot will keep you on your fingers and toes.