We've all been there. Just as you nick the golden idol, you're set upon by a horde of enraged apes who proceed to chase you through the jungle.

Your only hope is to run like hell and pray you don't stumble over a tree root or plummet to a watery grave.

That's the basic premise of Temple Run, another in a long line of endless-running smartphone games that prove the simplest concepts can be the most fun as long as they're executed well.

Monkey see, monkey chase

Temple Run casts you as an Indiana Jones-alike in a side-scrolling world. You have no control over your speed, so all you can do is dodge the obstacles that zip past on the ground.

You have four moves - turn left, turn right, jump, and slide -activated by swiping your finger left, right, up, or down on the screen. You can also tilt your phone / tablet to change your position.

Get your timing right and you might negotiate a corner, leap over a tree root, or skid beneath a burning fence. Get it wrong and you'll plunge into a swamp, get mauled by gorillas, or be incinerated.

There's no escape from the monkey horde - eventually you'll fail and die and have to start over again. You gain achievements by passing distance milestones, and along the way you can collect coins.

Jungle Booty

You can use these coins at an in-game shop to buy items to aid your doomed escape. Some of them offer speed boosts, others resurrect you where you fall, and so on.

You can spend real life money in the store as well, purchasing more coins to spend on the different items. It's not really necessary, though, as you'll pick up more than enough on your runs to buy all the power-ups you'll ever need.

Temple Run is a well-balanced game, starting things off slowly before throwing you into a world of quick swipes, tilts, and hilarious deaths.

Every playthrough is different - though the scenery largely isn't - so there's no pattern of learning involved. You pick up your phone / tablet, tap to grab the idol, and you're running for your life again.

It's not particularly original, and nor is it loaded with content. But if ambition is less important to you in a game than solid gameplay and smart presentation, then it's worth checking out.