Sometimes the simplest games are the most addictive. Flappy Bird took over the app market when it released; a game which consisted of tapping the screen to flap a pixelated bird through a series of pipes until you eventually hit one. Wire follows a similar formula, and in doing so manages to be as ridiculously, pointlessly addictive.
You play as the wire after which the app is named, a long, thin line which rises, dives, and curves across the screen in a smooth motion. It’s a one-touch game, meaning the wire moves continuously with your finger or thumb only controlling the upwards and downwards movement. That is of course until you crash into the darker coloured objects, which come in the forms of spikes, rotating wheels, and floating shapes. The further you reach without hitting anything, the better your score will be; the moment a collision takes place is when your score ends, and a bright white #SORRYBRO appears on the screen, just to make you feel better about the situation. What makes this more difficult is the constant changing of colours and shades, changing the wire along with them, as well as sound bars attached to the dark objects which increase and decrease in height depending on the beat of the soundtrack. These are all attempts to try and put you off, and become more frustrating the further you make it.
As is required for a one-touch game, Wired is responsive to the press of your finger or thumb. If you hold down on the screen the wire will continue to rise, but at precisely the moment you let go it will drop, lifelessly. Even if you go about rapidly tapping the screen, you can see the wire’s precise response by its small curves. Mechanically it’s very well made. Stylistically it looks nice too, with bright, attractive visuals on the main page, and different options of colours and shading on the gameplay screen, all attempts to further enslave you into its addictiveness.
As you attempt to break your best score, along the way you’ll find gems popping up, often in hard-to-get locations. Collect 100 of these and you’ll be rewarded with a new skin, which essentially means a different coloured background and a change in soundtrack. It helps break the monotony of playing the same-looking game over and over, and also provides another goal aside from beating your record. There are 16 unlockable skins, ranging from just plain gray to ‘garbage’, although we’re yet to work out what the latter consists of.
There isn’t an awful lot to Wire, but then there doesn’t need to be. There’s no tutorial needed or even any initial practice, it’s as easy as tapping the screen until your wire collides with an object. Perhaps that’s why people enjoy these easy-to-play one touch apps, because in their hectic lives they just want a game where they don’t have to think, but can just pick up and play.