In today’s crowded app marketplace, it can be difficult to find a casual gaming app that has a truly positive message. It seems even the most casual of games have zombies (death), guns, or gambling involved. Every so often, it’s refreshing to see a different type of game; Mom vs. Bad is one such example.
Drawing inspiration from the blog by the same name, Mom vs. Bad’s central character is “Mom,” a Super Hero complete with her own set of super powers and her own secret weapon. Game play consists of Mom helping guide falling animals safely to ground, accomplished by tossing (swiping) parachutes to the falling animals during their descend.
No need to worry about a negative message; while Mom does get penalized for missing a falling animal, no animals are hurt in the game (they pick themselves up and walk off the screen when they reach the bottom). The main obstacles in the game (besides the speed and volume of falling animals, e.g. think Tetris) are other objects simultaneously falling from the sky. For example, flaming boxes, barrels, and falling plants. Mom’s mission is to avoid the obstacles and successfully toss parachutes to the animals in need; and thankfully she has a sweet slow motion super power!
Mom v Bad is a casual game in the truest sense. Each level gets a tad more difficult than the previous, with gameplay never reaching the point where it becomes impossible to win. Part of the joy of playing, besides the adorable characters, is the positive reinforcement. As Mom saves more animals, words of encouragement cheer her on as she goes.
The overall message encourages children to understand that Moms are superheroes, also reminding Mothers themselves of the very fact! The game was developed, in part, to be entertainment for the developers own Mother while she was receiving blood transfusions to battle Lymphoma. The process of transfusion involves hours of sedentary treatment. Having a game to play, one that reminds a mom she’s a superhero, must be a bit comforting in such a trying time.
The developer has indicated the game will evolve over time (the current version has 30 playable levels split over 3 “Adventures”.) There are in-app purchases that users can make to advance game play. “Keys” to unlock future “challenges” or “adventures” are available for purchase if a player gets stuck. Unlike other games, purchases are not the only means of advancement in the game and patience and skill will continue to be the central means of progressing.