Simon Says Mobile
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Template:Infobox video game Simon Says Mobile is an arcade mobile game by American developer STALWARTPHOENIX released exclusively for Android smartphones in the Anglophone world. It is a free-to-play direct smartphone adaptation of the namesake children's activity, but contains advanced gameplay mechanics and freemium elements to enhance its replay value.
Simon Says Mobile is played similarly to the children's activity, "Simon Says", where one becomes Simon and issues commands that others are to follow only if they begin with "Simon Says", while eliminating players who fail to obey such commands, or follow counterfeit ones. In the single player mode for Mobile, the mobile device itself becomes Simon and issues commands to one single player, which involve performing typical mobile device gestures, such as tapping, swiping and tilting. The player must obey every of such command that begins with "Simon Says", and must not do anything when given a command that does not. Failing to obey a valid command, or obeying a counterfeit one, results in a game over. For each command obeyed, the player earns a point, as well as some in-game currency, and the game speed gradually begins to increase, making it difficult to keep up and continue playing.
As this game is endless, the player is encouraged to score as many points as possible before making a game-ending error. In between play sessions, players may spend in-game currency, typically by purchasing different game backgrounds, which are not cosmetic and therefore possess special abilities that can alter the game. In addition, players can also purchase power-ups that can allow them to earn better scores, survive longer or even earn more currency, such as a "Quick Shield" power-up that protects the player from a game-ending mistake, or a "Time Freeze" power-up that temporarily increases the amount of time the player has to correctly obey a valid Simon command. There is also the option to combine multiple copies of a power-up to create a stronger version of it, called a "super power-up". Players can even pay premium currency to save themselves after making a mistake, although the price of continuing will double with each subsequent error. Players will also incur penalties when choosing to continue while using super power-ups.
Mobile additionally contains a virtual card collection system, with five tiers of rarity. Players can draw cards to obtain power-ups, currency and other useful items periodically when certain conditions are met. Free cards are available every four hours, while card packs can be purchased with currency, or redeemed with special tickets that are earned by leveling up, which is done from gaining experience from following correct commands. Cards can also be obtained from completing optional daily missions called "Simon's Daily Orders", which are named as such to continually reflect the game's connection to the activity it represents. Card collecting is the only way to obtain pieces to assemble certain backgrounds, or unlock special re-skins of certain backgrounds.
In addition to single-player, Mobile contains four multiplayer modes, which are all played on a single device. The first mode, "Quick Draw", is a two-player contest that taxes reaction time, in which players await a valid Simon command and race to obey it to earn points. The second mode, "Endurance", has two players simultaneously surviving Simon's commands, with either player competing to outlast the other, each with a limited supply of three lives that are decremented for each mistake made. The third mode, "Frenzy", is a timed tug-of-war contest between two players that can only be won by obeying a never-ending chain of Simon commands at a faster rate than the opponent. The fourth mode, "Hot Potato", is inspired by Bop It's "Pass It" mode and is played with a group of people, who compete to be the last person standing as they take turns surviving five Simon commands, while those who make a mistake are eliminated.
This game supports the Google Play Games system, challenging players to tackle achievements and post their best high scores online, while allowing them to save their progress online to continue on another device. It also contains in-app purchases that allow players to refill their currency, or unlock minor premium features, such as the elimination of online advertisements that appear upon returning to the game's main menu, or the ability to create a custom background.
As an indie developer that sought to make Android games that few have ever thought of making, STALWARTPHOENIX eventually conceived of making Simon Says Mobile while searching for unique ideas for simple games, particularly after realizing how the "Simon Says" activity has never been knowingly adapted into a video game before, along with the potential for such activity to be a fun, simple arcade game. When it was initially released, Mobile sought to mimic the simplicity and success of dotGears' Flappy Bird, but eventually evolved through numerous updates that added more features and advanced mechanics to deepen the replay value and gameplay further, making it play more like the more popular endless runner games of the day, such as Temple Run 2.
Temporary legal conflict
The game suffered from a legal conflict that caused it to be unavailable for over a week in early 2017 when Hasbro ordered Google to take down numerous Android games that appear to infringe on one of their patented games, SIMON, which is a pattern-repeating game that is not identical to the original children's activity. Due to its title, Simon Says Mobile was mistaken as an unauthorized clone of SIMON and was pulled from the Google Play Store on February 16, 2017. The developer contacted a legal agent representing Hasbro to successfully appeal and overturn the block, and the game was restored on February 25, 2017, under the condition that it would make no effort to mimic the electronic SIMON game.
- "STALWARTPHOENIX Official Website". https://stalwartphoenixcom.wordpress.com/. Retrieved 3 September 2018.
- ""Simon Says Mobile" Google Play listing". 11 July 2016. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.stalwartphoenix.simonsaysmobile&hl=en&utm_source=global_co&utm_medium=prtnr&utm_content=Mar2515&utm_campaign=PartBadge&pcampaignid=MKT-Other-global-all-co-prtnr-py-PartBadge-Mar2515-1. Retrieved 3 September 2018.
- "STALWARTPHOENIX Google Play Developer Page". https://play.google.com/store/apps/dev?id=4708368025608783243&hl=en. Retrieved 3 September 2018.