It’s hard to approach Fly With Me with anything other than a thick air of cynicism. Any iOS game featuring an amiable little bird as its central character immediately induces sighs of famliarity.
The main menu doesn’t do much to help Fly With Me’s cause as a fiercely original property, either – it contains themed levels, all with three stars to capture, and even a circular arrow as a 'reset' button.
But look beneath the surface and it’s not actually very much like either Angry Birds or Tiny Wings. Fly With Me is far more like PopCap’s Facebook experiment Pig Up, where each tap of the screen is worth one flap of your feathered friend’s wings.
You need to get to the far right of each level, and you can only earn extra flaps by chomping bees along the way. Hit an obstacle, run out of flaps, or run into a spider and you’ll die in startlingly nasty fashion.
Getting caught in an arachnid’s trap and bound up for the feed is a particularly shocking sight in an otherwise happy cartoon land.Buy Now Pay Later
Fly With Me is a perfectly enjoyable if somewhat dull effort, with the only real tension coming from the fear of running out of ‘flaps’ (and the rather plodding process of restarting the level that comes with it).
However, dare to fail a couple of times and you’ll be prodded with opportunities to buy your way out of trouble, be it through unlocking every level, shelling out for an easier difficulty mode, or even paying for a power-up that otherwise doesn’t exist (despite the power-up icon actually living in each level).
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to make cash, and there's nothing fundamentally bad or evil about in-app purchases either, but their implementation here is blunt and artless.Killer Flap
Perhaps if the game itself was a little more interesting and exciting the whole idea of shelling out a little more cash to support the developers wouldn’t be so off-putting, but after 20 levels of rather mindless screen-tapping there’s little incentive to see what comes next.
Yes, the game does switch things up by introducing new hazards – geysers, hungry fish – but the result is largely the same – follow the path of bees, get to the end, and do it all again if you fail.
You can scramble a few extra morsels of fun scouring the levels for their three stars, but there’s nothing particularly clever about finding them – you’ve either taken the right path or not.
Each level only takes 20-or-so seconds, but the whole thing’s still far too laborious to make it worthwhile. You’re best off spreading your wings and finding something crafted with a little more love.