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Mobile Watch: Dumb Ways To Die

Safety first.

Incredibly fun and light-hearted, Dumb Ways To Die is a mini game mash-up used to educate and raise awareness around train and railway safety. It’s definitely an alternative way of delivering a rather serious message, yet Metro Trains has pulled it off and has in the process spawned a quick ‘n’ easy touch screen title, packed with plenty of giggles and a fair amount of re-playability.

Dumb Ways To Die falls into the same net as other quirky, fast-paced puzzlers such as Wario Ware and the more recent Frobisher Says. The objective is to clear a ongoing string of mini-games that get progressively faster as you go along. Put in a good performance and you’ll start populating your train station with a number of the game’s cute, albeit masochistic, characters.

Mini-games come in a number of varieties, none of which last more than a few seconds. In one frame you’ll be plugging up bullet wounds, and in the next, tilting your device to self-right an eerily smug-looking chappy. The more you play, the more puzzles you’ll come across including bear-poking, piranha bothering, and avoiding the clutches of cartoon serial killers.

The spread of mini-games are mostly consistent though there are a couple that could do with refining. One puzzle has players wiping vomit from their screens, an almost impossible task if you happen to be playing on iPad or even an iPad Mini, through the much greater screen size compared to a phone. Another requires players to blow into the mic to keep a plane afloat, though I was unable to do so after a dozen or so attempts. They by no means do they detract from the overall experience, though, and as soon as your three lives expire, you can start it all over and aim for those high scores.

The only major complain would be the overall lack of puzzles on offer. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty there, but Dumb Ways To Die could certainly benefit from a few updates and additions down the road.

Part of the game’s charm has to its vibrant yet simplistic art style. In this respect it can again be compared to Honeyslug’s Frobisher Says, though both games have an equally distinct sense of character, which in this case is amplified by the chirpy music and sound effects.


Dumb Ways To Die is a great little touch screen puzzler, but the lack of mini-games means it won’t be one of those continual time sinks like Temple Run. Still, it’s rather brilliant and helps teach younger audiences about the dangers of acting carelessly.

12 Comments
  1. Alex C
    One for all.
    Since: Forever

    Surprised there’s no mention of the intrusive, hard to skip adverts that appear almost constantly.

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:06.
    • Jim Hargreaves
      Member
      Since: Nov 2009

      Aye, they can be a little intrusive but didn’t distract me much. Not as bad as cramming free/premium games with micro-transaction ads though I’m sure others will have a different opinion.

      Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:19.
      • hornet1990
        Member
        Since: Mar 2011

        Strangely enough I don’t recall seeing them when I first came across this months ago, they seem to have come in with a recent update along with new puzzles.

        But damn you Jim! It took me weeks to shift this tune from my head and now it’s rooted back in there!!! :)

        Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:29.
    • wonkey-willy
      Member
      Since: Jan 2010

      the only problem with this is it full of intrusive, hard to skip adverts that appear almost constantly..
      there mentioned it!
      what you missed out is the non responsive controls and frustrating ui

      Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:50.
  2. hornet1990
    Member
    Since: Mar 2011

    I take it the last paragraph starting typo is supposed to be an ironic statement or something?! ;)

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:14.
  3. tonycawley
    Pint! Pint!
    Since: Feb 2009

    I just love that song. May download this for my 3 year old.

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 09:28.
    • philbert8
      The Frankie Boyle Of TSA
      Since: Sep 2010

      I have it as my ringtone!

      Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 10:00.
  4. philbert8
    The Frankie Boyle Of TSA
    Since: Sep 2010

    Love this game, though I can only scape just over 2000, my wife gets over 5000. Nimble fingers ;)

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 10:02.
  5. DividSmythe
    Member
    Since: May 2012

    Wow great recommendation. It is also on android. Also you can get rid of the stupid non-working plane mode.
    I’m going to recommend this to my little ones school in the meeting today.

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 10:03.
  6. Tarbun84
    Member
    Since: Feb 2012

    Loving this game. Silliness personified

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 11:25.
  7. Tuffcub
    On the naughty step.
    Since: Dec 2008

    Reminded me of Frobishers says when I played it for 2 minutes before wiping it. Mobile games are awesomely shite.

    Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 14:08.
    • Jim Hargreaves
      Member
      Since: Nov 2009

      Oh shush, you :)

      Comment posted on 17/10/2013 at 14:35.

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