Ludo HD iPad game wouldn’t even be a bargain if it were free

Jun 27, 2011
Games

I have a hard time believing that Ludo HD is a finished game. With no music or sound effects to speak of and an obviously incomplete set of rules, I would have a hard time recommending this app if it were free, let alone $1.99. The game of Ludo has been around for quite some […]

I have a hard time believing that Ludo HD is a finished game. With no music or sound effects to speak of and an obviously incomplete set of rules, I would have a hard time recommending this app if it were free, let alone $1.99.

The game of Ludo has been around for quite some time. It was first patented in the late 1800s and is a simpler version of the much older game Parcheesi which originated in India. The mechanics are quite simple, and it will take no time to pick up, despite a rules page that doesn’t even cover the basics. The goal of the game is to navigate four tokens around the board and into home base. Rolling a five or six on the die will allow one of your tokens to start its journey. If you land on another player’s token, he or she must start over.

There are a couple rules that might differ in this particular version of Ludo, neither of which are explained. The first is that when your token lands on a green space, if you are the green player you may skip ahead to the next green space, sometimes skipping a large section of the board. The second rule, is that if two or more of your tokens are occupying the same space and another player’s token lands on them, all of the pieces must return to the launching pad, including the attacking player’s token. The first time this happened, I had to do a double take, as I wasn’t expecting this result. Later on, I was able to confirm that this is how the game works, even though it is never addressed in the rules.

The design of the board and user interface are clean and simple, and probably would appeal to the children this app seems to be aimed at. Here lies the second major flaw. There are no sound effects or music. I have yet to run across an app of this nature that didn’t provide some sort of sound effect for the dice rolling, or tokens moving across the board. This seems like a very strange omission, especially for a children’s game. A simple update might be in the works, and that would go a long way toward making this app worthwhile. At $1.99 though, and in its current state, this app should be a pass.

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Wayne Stuckey

After receiving his bachelor's degree in management information systems on planet Earth, Wayne decided to settle down and live there. He writes from the plains of the Midwest.

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