Dumb Ways to Die is a microgame collection that follows in the footsteps of games like those in the WarioWare franchise. The idea is that by throwing extremely simple, short games at your in quick succession, your reaction skills and patience are put to the test. I've always been surprised by how enjoyable this format is, and despite trading a controller for a touchscreen, Dumb Ways to Die is certainly a worthy addition to the genre.
The game is based on a popular web video featuring cute characters meeting their makers in extremely stupid manners. The short objectives are based on the various "dumb ways to die" from the video itself, including setting your setting your hair on fire, eating superglue, and poking a bear with a stick.
But instead of simply watching each adorable little creature die before your eyes, your job is to keep them alive. For example, the character with his head on fire can run to put it out, requiring you to tap on the touchscreen as fast as you can, and the bear-poking moron can duck when the woodland creature goes in for a bite, but you have to time the duck perfectly.
Each minigame takes just seconds to complete, and in the early going it's a fairly simple challenge, but the longer you last, the faster the games come at you. Eventually you're tasked with completing the objectives in a second or less, and the games themselves become more complicated as well; Instead of plugging two wounds with your finger to stop bleeding, suddenly you have to plug five or six.
The game is free but features in-game advertising to pay the bills. Thankfully, the ads are non-intrusive and only pop up when you return to the main menu. This keeps the fast-paced action moving, and limits any frustration you might have from the money-making pop-ups.
As a free title, Dumb Ways to Die is ridiculously fun and a great time waster. You'll want to play it over and over again once you start, and it's also the kind of game you can hand off between friends when you're bored. Give it a go, and try not to die.