There’s a saying that ‘any landing you can walk away from is a good one’. This ideal is central to the gameplay in Any Landing, a new endless flyer game, from UK based indie developers Strange Flavour.
In the game you take the role of a pilot who works for a very low-budget airline called Chicken Air. It’s so cheap that the airline can’t even afford parts for their aircraft. This leaves them very unreliable and prone to crashing a lot.
Never one to miss an opportunity the boss of Chicken Air has landed a lucrative demolition contract. His idea is that while flying passengers around you can take advantage of your experience at crashing to knock down all the old buildings that need to be destroyed. In return the company will make more money which will keep them in business.
The game is played by holding your iPad vertically in front of you. Missions start with your plane taking off full of passengers. As you take to the air your wheels always fall off giving you no choice but to attempt dangerous landings. Controlling the plane is done by tilting your iPad left and right. Tilting left pulls back on the stick in an attempt to gain altitude but reduces your speed. Tilting right puts your aircraft into a dive to gain speed.
Your engines are near useless and only provide a limited amount of power. You need to save this until you absolutely need it. Staying in the air requires some skill to constantly dive to gain speed before pulling back to climb. Hitting the throttle uses your engines but these really only last a few seconds before bursting into flames.
To make matters worse the skies are full of all manner of hazards from thick clouds, to thunder storms and flocks of birds. There is also a rival airline called Evil Air who will do anything to hinder you. This includes everything from generally just getting in your way to blowing you out of the skies.
Ideally what you need to do is stay in the air long enough to reach the next airport. If you can manage to do this then you can set passengers down safely and take more on board. At times you have no choice but to crash land your plane. This takes practice to reduce your speed and altitude safely without going into a stall. If you can’t find a runway then you need to at least find a level strip of terrain.
As you fly along you’ll encounter a variety of different balloons. Collecting red balloons repairs your aircraft, green gives you rocket boost and blue gives you cargo. Collecting cargo gives you bonus equipment that you can use to enhance your plane. You can also spend the cash you earn on new equipment or bigger planes.
As we’ve come to expect from free games Any Landing features a variety of optional In-App Purchases. These are to buy wings that are used to purchase upgrades and they can also be used as continues. Strange Flavour have implemented their own system called Play Nice which adds a maximum spend for the player. You can buy the top package or lots of smaller ones up to the value of the most expensive. Once you have spent the maximum value then these microtransactions are removed. It’s a nice idea that allows the developers to make some cash but doesn’t force players to pay forever to keep enjoying the game.
Any Landing takes a little time to learn but is fun to play and rather addictive once you get your head around it. Sadly the difficulty ramps up rather quickly and we doubt most players will see past the first couple of levels. If you enjoy endless runner style games it is definitely worth a look.