The Daily App: Angry Santa -- Fat, Rude and Out of Control
Christmas isn't here yet, but if you're feeling Scrooge-like about the holidays, you'll enjoy a slew of eccentric apps that poke fun of the season.
The holidays promise an enchanted idyll of family togetherness, warmth and cheer, complete with eggnog, candles and carols sung by adorable cherubs. But the reality can be a downer, as you watch your pocketbook deplete buying, wrapping and giving presents to ungrateful brats, the crowds at stores hit tsunami-like levels and it's just... so... cold... grr!
Let's face it: you need a drink and a laugh during this time of year. We can't help you with alcohol, but there's a whole genre of "Bad Santa" apps out there that deflate the idea of a hearty, jolly big fellow with endless reservoirs of largesse and presents to give. In these apps, Santa is grumpy, rude and greedy -- providing laughs and giggles for anyone looking for a comedic take on holiday app entertainment.
What Are the Apps?
Everyone thinks Santa is so jolly, all "ho ho ho" and "Merry Christmas!" But the truth is, delivering presents in one night is a hard job with a lot of pressure, and sometimes the cheerful facade cracks. "Angry Santa" is a free iOS game that takes the raging id behind St. Nick and runs with it. The app is simple, similar in principle to apps like Tom the Talking Cat: you rub, tap or shake Santa, and he responds. He gets angrier the more you rile him up, turning redder with each gesture. Even his teeth get sharper and pointier, making you wonder if there's a connection between Santa and vampires.
In truth, "Angry Santa" is a little too simple, even for what it is: only his face is animated, and his repertoire of responses gets a bit tired after a certain point. And let's be real: it's really only intermittently funny. You might get more mileage out of "Christmas Run! Angry Santa's Revenge" instead, which adds gameplay to the idea of a Santa with anger management issues.
In this game, free on iOS, Santa has gotten tired of delivering presents to ungrateful kids and is out for payback. He's still got to deliver presents to the good kids, but in a major tantrum, also wants to bomb the houses of the naughty list. Overreaction, much? On top of that, he's got to do it before sunrise, or else he gets really, really mad... and it sure isn't pretty. The game is a bit tricky and the graphics are colorful enough, but the app does have a tendency to crash -- which could make you want to bomb your device, or at least hurl it across the room.
With all that stress, maybe poor Santa just needs a donut to take the edge off. With "Hungry Santa" game, you make sure Santa eats by moving him to catch food falling from the sky. The more he eats, the fatter and happier he gets. The only problem? He's got a picky appetite, and if you feed him something like broccoli, he vomits it up. Gross, but funny.
The game is silly and the graphics are serviceable, but it's well done and addicting, with new skills and power-ups introduced throughout to keep it interesting. It's a classic example of something simple that manages to succeed because it's nicely thought-out and executed -- which can make all the difference when it comes to easy but effective app games.
You'll Want It If...
The truth is, a lot of successful apps in the gaming and entertainment categories aren't known for their sophistication -- the most successful ones are often the digital mobile equivalent of a "pull my finger!" or knock-knock joke. And these apps are no exception. They don't really have legs in terms of apps you'll want to visit repeatedly, but then again, they are holiday apps, and chances are you won't be so keen to play them once the season is over.
It's Not My Thing, What Else Ya Got?
If you're so stressed out that not even rude, fat, angry Santas can amuse you, you may just need to chill out. Take a look at some relaxation apps like "Sleep Machine," which will sap away stress during a busy season. It's initially designed to help sleep, but the soothing soundscapes made a great meditation tool as well.
Or, if you're really gunning for a drink, the "Wine Ratings+" app, put out by Wine Spectator magazine, will help you find that perfect glass of vino to drown away your holiday ennui and get you back into the spirit of the season again. Everything looks better after a glass of wine, right? ♦
Categories: Games | The Daily App