Parachute Panic - Review

Parachute Panic dropped into the Marketplace a little while ago bringing a unique look to the Xbox Live gaming app line up. The Windows Phone 7 game offers a simple approach to the graphics and may have some of the best sound effects/music tracks of any Windows Phone game.

The object of the game is elementary. Guide your parachute stick figure to a safe landing on a boat that is drifting around at the bottom of the screen. Along your journey you'll avoid helicopters, U.F.O.'s and the stray thunderstorm. Oh and by the way, every now and then the the boats move with the currents giving you a moving target to contend with. Did I mention the man eating sharks?

To read more on this entertaining game from Microsoft Studios and ....., just jump on past the break.

Gravity works

While some may see it odd that a person will not only jump out of a perfectly good airplane but also to do so just to land on a boat, the premise makes for an interesting game. Parachute Panic is a mulit-level game that has you guiding parachutist along their journey to awaiting ships. The more parachutists who land safely on the ships, the more points you accumulate.

Some forget to deploy their parachute (in which you'll need to tap on them) while others realize gravity works and the chute will open without the need for help. To help navigate their fall, all you need to do is swipe the screen left or right to create gentle gusts of wind that moves the parachutists in the proper direction.

As the game progresses, obstacles enter the picture by way of helicopters that will shred your parachutist into ground beef; U.F.O.'s that will abduct them; and thunderstorms that will strike against them with lightning. You try to avoid these dangers but when all else fails, you can repeatedly tap the helicopter and U.F.O. to destroy it but you'll have to ride out the thunderstorms.

You begin each game with six lives, that is you can only let six parachutists meet their doom. Along the way, you can regain lives by capturing a Stork that will occasionally fly across the screen. Just have a parachutist fall on the Stork and your life meter will gain a happy face.

You do have one more danger to watch out for and for the most part, when you see this danger it's too late. If your parachutist falls too close to the water he's gobbled up rather quickly by a shark.

Parachute Panic also has a few items that you can catch for bonus points (a flying fish and Doodler from Doodle Jump) and as your rack up points you'll earn extra lives as well.

Game Play

Playing Parachute Panic was very entertaining. The hand-drawn graphics give the game a distinctive look (the wrinkly notebook paper is a great touch) and makes the game just plain fun to watch. Toss in fantastic sound effects and finger snapping music, the game play becomes really good.

Your parachutists are very receptive to movements and will cross over from one side of the screen to the other. So be careful trying to land on a ship moving off screen. If your parachutist is moving too fast, he'll become shark bait on the other side of the screen.

Stability wise, Parachute Panic ran without any glitches, bugs, hitches or crashes experienced. The animation ran smoothly and page loads were fast.  Parachute Panic also has a healthy help/how-to section that lays the game out nicely.

Xbox Live

Parachute Panic is an Xbox Live app in that your achievements and scores are reflected on your Xbox Live Profile. There is a leader board available where you can post your scores against your Xbox Live friends' scores.

Overall Impression

Parachute Panic is a great game to have on your Windows Phone. Graphically well presented, the game is challenging, the animations fun (the game needs a pterodactyl though), and the music is toe-tapping good. The only question we have is that while it's entertaining, can it maintain that level of interest over an extended period of time?

There is an addictive quality to Parachute Panic that will keep you interested in the game but you can get saturated with the game after a while. Yet all is not lost. When you do launch Parachute Panic after a few days rest, you will find your interest in the game re-kindled.

If I had to label Parachute Panic, it's an anchor game for your Windows Phone.  One that you may get tired of playing after a while but will revisit with regularity.

There is a free trial available for Parachute Panic to let you try before you buy. The full version is running $2.99. Parachute Panic is one Windows Phone game everyone should try. You can find your copy here (opens your Zune desktop) at the Marketplace.

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.