Daily iPhone App: Mansion Run through some spooky pixels

Underground Pixel is a retro game developer that's put out a few iOS titles already, and their latest release is called Mansion Run, now available on the App Store for just US$0.99.

Mansion Run is simple by design -- in fact, it's almost too simple. The idea is that you're a skeleton named Boney Wellington (nice) who has to run through a house full of poltergeisted furniture. There are four levels to run on, and the whole game is that you simply swipe up or down to switch levels, dodging furniture for as long as you can. That's it -- all of the furniture is essentially the same, and none of it ever moves. Just run and dodge.

That simplicity may sound a bit off-putting, and it is -- Mansion Run doesn't put any of its complexity up front. There are some minigames to mix things up (including a quick-time event where you need to swipe the screen in a certain pattern), and extra rooms to find, but honestly, even after about 10 or 15 runs, I was never able to find or pull off either of those. There are also various characters to unlock and powerups to use, but these don't really seem to affect the game all that much.

Still, Mansion Run is charming, due to the great pixel graphics and the excellent soundtrack. The game's vibe is very fun, and it's the kind of game that you can get immensely good at over time -- you can slide through very small spaces in the furniture, so if your twitch muscles are well-tuned, you can pull off some nice runs. It's hardly a deep game, but it is well-made and provides plenty of entertainment for the price. If you want a cheap, fun and simple runner to add a little joy to your iPhone gaming time, give Mansion Run a try.