If you’ve ever been stuck on a tour of an old period house, chances are you’ve fantasized at least once about how cool it’d be to fold up a paper airplane and toss it right over those velvet rope lines. Infinity Lane’s Folded Flyer (Out Now, $1.99) basically lets you do that, putting you in charge of a paper glider with a luxurious estate all to itself.
A simple test of tilt-driven flight accuracy, Flyer has you guiding the plane through one set of rings after another while searching rooms for puzzle pieces tucked into obscure corners. The rings give you upgrade points and the puzzle pieces new skins that can be assigned between levels. It’s too bad that with only five levels on offer, you get precious little chance to put the speed, handling and boost upgrades to use before the game runs fresh out of content.
Flyer’s upgrade system has separate tiers for the plane’s speed, ease of handling and boosting ability. The really weird thing is that prices for second-tier upgrades are eye-poppingly exorbitant. One playthrough will let you afford the first tier upgrades comfortably, but you’d have to re-play the game, like, a dozen times to afford the second tiers. And there are seven tiers for each upgrade — the math just isn’t working out here. The upgrade system might feel more natural with a plethora of new levels in content updates. But on the other hand, brevity will suit Flyer perfectly well until it gives players some new challenges to conquer. Timed levels to make the boost ability a serious gameplay element and tougher obstacles than furniture will hopefully accompany any content updates.
The game’s interface screams for more calibration options. While oversteering subsides with practice and the handling upgrades, Flyer lags behind the best tilt games for its lack of default angle adjustment. Play this while reclining on the couch and your plane’s in serious trouble; only if you’re smartly upright at all times does the game handle as intended.
What Flyer does have going for it is heavily branching level design, which gives the few levels on offer a wide open feel. The soundtrack is naturally limited but a fun listen, and you have to respect the amount of 3D modeling that went into the arching stairways and furniture that serve as obstacles.
iFanzine Verdict: A bare-bones flight sim, Folded Flyer needs more content and challenge variety before it gains lasting appeal. The devs certainly show their merit in level design and modeling though!