You remember the first time you played Angry Birds, right? What about the first time you picked up the iPhone 4 and realized just how beautiful a phone can be, both in hardware and software? Well, the latest company to launch out of betaworks mixes the addictive nature of Angry Birds with the minimalist beauty of Apple’s hardware and software.
The idea is simple: Everyone has played connect the dots with their friends during science class or with a sibling on a long plane ride. Dots is the digital version of the classic pencil-and-paper game.
The rules are slightly different. Instead of drawing against another player, or being allowed a single line at a time, you simply connect all the dots of the same color that are in a straight line. The more dots you can connect, the more points you get. If you happen to be able to connect the dots into a square, you get even more points.
Each game lasts 60 seconds, but it never feels like long enough.
The choice to build a game surprised me at first. The App Store is completely saturated with a million games, ranging from big names like Angry Birds all the way down to the silly stuff. But Dots actually has a solid chance at penetrating a huge market.
For one, the app touches on our memories of connecting the dots with our friends. It’s sentimental right off the bat.
It also appeals to everyone. Children could easily play Dots, yet adults would still find it challenging. And to top it all off, the team worked really hard to make sure that the design was just as simple and natural as the game itself.
“It’s hard to articulate what makes something fun, but we spent a lot of time and care crafting a well designed, and hopefully delightful experience that unfolds as you play,” said co-founder Paul Murphy. “This also reflects the background of the founder – Patrick Moberg. Patrick is a truly talented designer, illustrator, developer — you’ll see his personality and talent reflected as you play the game and win trophies.”
But how will Dots make money?
The currency of the game is actually called “dots”, which you earn for playing well. You can use these dots to get advanced powers. Of course, like most games, you can also buy dots through in-app purchases. Thankfully, you can always earn the same powers that are available for purchase, so you’ll never be roped in to spending money in order play more.
Dots is available now on the App Store.