Rick O'Shea on Android Market and App Store: Nights at the Circus, doing the Cannonball Run

By Bulent Yusuf on at

You know what we need more of in our mobile gaming? We need a round of applause every time we complete a stage. And maybe some sympathetic groaning when we heroically fail at a tricky juncture. Alas, your fellow commuters on the train are not likely to oblige, they're too busy thinking about what they're having for dinner tonight. Fortunately, Rick O'Shea has a built-in audience that's ready to cheer you on, every step of the way.


What's it all about?

The titular hero of this gaming app is a stuntman and daredevil of the circus variety. His specialism is being fired from a cannonball and bouncing off the walls. His name is a pun on the word "ricochet", geddit?

Players have to guide Rick through each level to the exit, fired from multiple cannons and dodging pitfalls like man-eating sharks and spiky spikes that not even a crash helmet can provide protection from. Bonus points are scored each round through variables like collecting stars, times taken, and the number of bounces Rick makes before completing the level.

All in all, it's a deft little physics puzzler, with simple one touch controls and an all-ages premise that either grandparents or grandchildren will grasp immediately.


Why do we like it?

It's quite possible that Rick O'Shea could become a monster-sized hit. Why? Because it got that all-important sticky quality, the kind that compels you to have just one more go before you get to your bus-stop.

We're not sure why it's so sticky exactly; it could be that Rick is an instantly likeable character, a quintessential representation of those oddballs who risk life and limb to perform pointless stunts. Or it might be because the levels are cleverly designed and manage to strike the right difficulty balance throughout.

The game is free to download, and available on both Android and iOS platforms. What madness is this? Well, it so happens that the first "act" of the game is free, together with a couple of mini-games, with another four unlockable acts for 69p each. That means you can give the game a thorough playtest before investing in any more levels. A crazy idea, but it might just work.


Rick O'Shea is free to download on Android Market | App Store