Spider: The Secret of Bryce Manor – Review

Here at Coopdojo, we’re not huge fans of portable games. We usually like to spend our gaming hours on consoles, not smartphones, and so we miss many of the portable titles (unless they get amazing reviews like the great Monument Valley). However, like many people in summertime, we’ve spent quite a bit of time in airports and nothing helps a human being maintain sanity while flying as well as a good IOS game. So we consider ourselves really lucky this summer to have found time to write a our review of Spider : The Secret of Bryce Manor.

In the game, you play as a spider whose infiltrating a seemingly deserted manor. There are secrets to discover in the house but – as a spider – you’re far more interested in finding insects to eat. The fun thing about gameplay is your spider’s ability to fling herself (himself?) across a wide stretch of screen. A tap on the screen can send you bounding from one end to the other. Double tap the spider and you’ll spin a strand to start a web; connect three strands in a triangle and you’ll complete a web. The goal of each level is to trap insects in the webs you make before you run out of webbing (though we have to assume this; we never actually ran out of webbing). Once you eat enough insects, you can move to the next level.

You'll pick up the gameplay right away.  However, for a straightforward game, there's a lot of variety here.  The music is fun and surprisingly light given the fact that you're a spider sneaking through a creepy mansion.  Insects are varied across the levels, ranging from crickets to moths to ladybugs. Some of them have to be grabbed, some have to be chased into webs, and some have to be ambushed with webs.  Switch on a light, for example, and moths will swarm around it.  Trapping them in webs is as easy as drawing moths to a...well you get the idea.  The best, though, are the hornets. They can’t be caught in webs but have to be tackled by diving through the air. Sending your (surprisingly indestructible) spider careening through space to take down an annoying hornet is amazingly gratifying.  Locations vary quite a bit too, and different portions feel very different in design and style. There’s a lot of levels in this game and the graphics, music and gameplay will keep you interested all the way through.

It’s funny, but the actual secret of Bryce Manor is pretty easy to ignore. The weight of the event that’s occurred doesn’t really manifest until late in the game but that’s fine; this is just one of those game elements that’s there if you’re interested but is not necessary for enjoying the game. Meanwhile, if you’re interested in picking up a fun title on the portable system, we’d highly recommend Spider: TSOBM (particularly if you’re heading into a long flight and the only movie available stars Adam Sadler).

Graphics: 95

Graphics are stellar. Each room looks amazing and we loved the levels taking place outside the house (particularly the beautiful sunset on the roof stage). Couple that with the incredible soundtrack and you have one beautiful game.

Gameplay: 80

We haven’t enjoyed playing as a spider this much since Deadly Creatures (which you MUST PLAY if you haven’t already), but it is a little difficult to be precise with the touchscreen (often you’ll poke your spider several times before she starts webbing).

Replayability: 85

To us, we could easily sit through another round of the game. Catching the bugs is fun and while we weren’t too interested in the mystery, we could be persuaded to give it another look.

OVERALL: 85

We liked this game a lot and we’d say it’s definitely a game to play if you’re in the market for a fun IOS game.

[GARD]