Toy planes don't power themselves, people! In Funtomic's Help Me Fly, you're tasked with aiding a pint-sized pilot energize his plane so he can take off. Is this game worth its wings, or should it stay grounded?

While the title might lead you to believe this is a flight simulator, Help Me Fly is actually a puzzle game. Your goal in each level is to use a series of blocks to create a circuit between the toy plane and a battery. The blocks come in a variety of types, shapes, and sizes, (as to do the levels), and as you progress through the game new obstacles will arise that will make you change the way you approach a given level. The premise is simple, but the brilliance is in the execution. The puzzles are well thought out, and usually have multiple solutions so that players don't feel fettered to a particular methodology.

Beating a level is usually pretty straightforward, but the real fun and challenge comes from earning the stars, which are scattered throughout. If you connect a circuit that reaches both the plane and the stars, you'll earn said stars and they'll go towards unlocking the next world. There are currently 60 levels spread across four worlds, with the promise of more to come; the later worlds are gated, requiring that you have a certain number of stars to progress to the next area. Help Me Fly is generous in requiring that you only get most, but not all of the stars in a world, so if there is a level or two that you just can't wrap your head around it's not necessarily going to impede your progress.

The visuals and audio are both as cute as a lil' baby button. Help Me Fly's clean art style give it a distinctive and legible look, and its music and sound effects are peppy, yet soothing. A huge mark in the plus column for Help Me Fly would be its pricing. This puzzler is 99 cents. That's it. No in-app purchases, no spammy ads, no harassment to spend more change to unlock the other levels. You spend your dollar, you get everything the game has to offer, and you progress based on your merits and your merits alone. This pricing keeps with the rest of Help Me Fly's refreshingly simple mentality, and it's a welcome reprieve from the spamtacular trends that plague most modern iOS titles.

If you're a fan of visual puzzles you'd be remiss to pass up Help Me Fly. It's a unique, fun little game that comes at a budget price with no secret agenda; all it wants is for you to have fun solving puzzles and helping planes take off.


App Store Link: Help Me Fly for iPhone & iPad | By Funtomic, LTD. | Price: $0.99 | Version: 0.98 | 29.7 MB | Rating 4+

8.0 out of 10 arcade sushi rating