iOS App: Runsanity Review

Genre: Runner
Platform: iOS
ESRB: E for Everyone

Developer: Heliceum
Publisher: Heliceum
Released: November 27th 2012


Runsanity, as its name implies, is a game centered entirely upon running. To this end the gameplay is solid. Running across the sidescrolling screen is supplemented by precision jumping, either aiming to land on or avoid obstacles, collect coins, and collect letters of the word run as you try to escape the jaws of a psychotic chihuahua. The simple one touch style gameplay is always appreciated on my smartphone but the gameplay is very familiar and formulaic, leaving the premise and the graphics to carry the bulk of my judgment. I played this game before it was released to the public and as such cannot comment on the social dimensions of the game which it proudly brandishes, so I’ll be forced to ignore them.

Unfortunately I find the premise to be pretty heavy on the silly and cornball side of things, with a genius presumably high school nerd turning everyone else into nerds, in some sort of poorly thought out revenge scheme. Inexplicably the central protagonists ring tone reverses the effect, leaving you to run around town de-nerding your friends while running from the antagonists dog and subsequently becoming those friends so you can run from the dog some more. This sort of thing may appeal to some but for me the story falls flat and I would have been happier with no plot outside of “Oh shit run (from that crazy dog)!”.

The graphics during gameplay are solid, with goodies and obstacles clearly identifiable and even a convenient bar at the bottom to show how far along the current stage you are. The cut scenes however disappointed me. Rather than improving on the gameplays graphics, the cut scenes are actually of inferior quality, taking on a big-headed cartoonish quality with little shading that only makes the story that much harder to sit through.

While multiple playable characters is one of my favorite things to see, Runsanity also carries one of my least favorite qualities, that being game time padding by putting a price on continuing the game. After completing the first chapter I discovered I needed 5000 coins to unlock the next chapter, and I had only earned about 3500. At this point I could either replay old missions until I’d picked up an extra 1500 coins (regrettable) or I could spend real money to buy more coins just to be able to continue playing (obscene). While I appreciate the fact that they left me the chance to keep playing without paying, I still wasn’t inspired to put in the work it would take to do so.

Ultimately I found the game enjoyable to play, I just found the filler provided by the story insufferable, and if I’m going to play a game this common I’d like everything about the one I choose to appeal to me.


  • Smooth gameplay visuals
  • One-touch gameplay
  • Can be played as a Quick-fix


  • Corny premise
  • Game length padded by needing to pay to unlock the story
  • Ugly cutscenes

[xrr rating=5/10]

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