Before I even fired it up for the first time, I had a feeling I was going to really like Star Garden Games’ Binary Dash (out now, free). This auto-runner just oozes a sense of fun and quirky charm.

Your goal in Binary Dash is simple. Make it to the end of each of its 90+ bite-sized stages without dying, while grabbing as many gold coins as possible. The game is blazingly fast-paced from the word go and features unpredictable level designs, so thankfully its controls are kept as non-finicky and easy to use as possible. Tapping anywhere on the right-hand side of the screen makes your character jump. And tapping anywhere on the left-hand side flips gravity, allowing him to travel through the floor to the underside of the level in order to grab extra coins and evade enemies.

It’s not terribly groundbreaking or original, but Binary Dash’s gameplay is a lot of fun and the well-implemented gravity flipping mechanic adds an extra wrinkle of challenge. As if that wasn’t enough to get and keep you hooked, the game also provides a host of collectables like cute character skins and bonus levels to work towards. These are unlocked using the coins and keys you gather while playing, so there’s a real incentive to tackle every stage on both ‘normal’ and ‘hard’ mode.

If you’re wondering how I’ve managed to get this far into a review of a free-to-play title without mentioning IAPs, it’s because Binary Dash only offers one: a premium version unlock. How that works is that the free version of Binary Dash lets you play an incredibly generous chunk of the game (more than half of it!), before you hit a paywall and are given the option to cough up $0.99 to unlock the rest of the levels, character skins, etc.

Verdict

Binary Dash is a blazingly fast-paced, reaction-based auto-runner that boasts simple-yet-challenging gameplay, lots of content, and gorgeously colorful visuals. The free version is a must-get if you like this kind of game, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself powerless not to plunk down the asking price to unlock the rest of the levels. It’s just THAT fun!

Positives
Simple yet challenging
Nifty gravity flipping mechanic
Colorfully vibrant visuals
Tons of levels and unlockables
Negatives
The fast pace and steep difficulty won’t be for everyone
4
Great
Download on the App Store