Genre of Game: Race games
Games played: Temple Run and Tiny Wings
Temple Run – Created by Imangi Studios , accessible on App Store, audience of 9yr +
Tiny Wings – Created by Andreas Illiger , accessible on App Store, audience of 5yr +
Both Temple Run and Tiny Wings have the same objective: get as far as you can in the game until you’ve become too slow or start to fall behind. Both games rely on the user feeling successful when they are ahead, and getting a much-needed sense of urgency and anxiety when they start to fal behind. The interesting thing is that the two themes create a sense of urgency in very different ways.
In Temple Run, you are being chased by something extremely physical. There are sound effects as the monster runs after you and there is a clear change in tone as it gets closer. The screen and visuals even change to create more of a sense of dread and it is very obvious. At the end when you’re caught you get violently mauled.
On the other hand, Tiny Wings is more about a subtle anxiety. The sun is going down and night is chasing you. There is no entity to escape except for the natural elements. The only villain here is sleep. Though you still feel stressed about outrunning the sunset, it’s not tense in the same way that Temple Run is. Seeing the bird just curl up and start sleeping when the sun goes down is a very different resolution than the violent end of Temple Run. The lighter and more calm scenery and music of Tiny Wings reflects this difference.