Is it just me or are pranks pretty much the most amusing thing ever? Last night I watched a documentary about lotto winners and they showed video of a guy who’s friends tricked him into thinking he won. It was hilarious! So naturally, when I saw Jack-in-the-box : Find the difference show up in my inbox I definitely had to try it out.
Created by FunGear Studio, Jack-in-the-box : Find the difference is a prank app hidden behind the guise of a “find the difference” game. It lets you customize a scare tactic to pop up and surprise unsuspecting victims during game-play. You can choose from three included images and sounds or you can add/record your own, you can type a custom message that displays after the image and sound is displayed, and you can choose when you want the prank to be triggered (Level 1, 2, or 3).
So you’re probably wondering how you can set all this up without your victims sniffing out that it’s a prank app. Well, I can honestly say there’s zero chance anyone that’s never seen the app will find the options menu. It’s very cleverly hidden within a collage of images that runs across the top of the home screen like a banner. If you press the pink gift box within the banner it unveils the options menu where you can customize your prank specifically for your victim.
So how good is this app? Well, overall the quality of the find the difference game within the app is excellent. It’s much more crisp, clean, and polished then you might expect from a prank app. The layout and design of the menus and the types of options included are well thought out and executed. Everything about the app is perfect except one MAJOR thing; the scare.
I tested Jack-in-the-box : Find the difference with three separate people. Each one having absolutely no idea I was pranking them. I tested various different scares at all three trigger points (Level 1, Level 2, Level 3). Everybody’s initial reaction was that the game was fun. In fact, one person said to me “I love it!” while playing. So needless to say when I heard that comment I knew they were concentrating heavily on the game therefore the scare should have maximum effectiveness. Unfortunately, due to the timing of the scare, every person I tried the app out on ended up being confused and not scared.
How could this happen? Well, the scare is currently setup to only be able to launch after time runs out. Once you select which level you want the scare to pop out on the app automatically removes one of the differences in the level so it’s impossible for your victim to complete it. Once time runs out the scare makes itself known. Unfortunately, because it comes at the end of the level, ever person I tried it on already had accepted they lost and diverted their attention away from the screen at the time the scare popped up. When they looked back their first and only reaction was “what is this?”.
Overall I’m a huge fan of the concept of this app. I absolutely love pranks so anytime I can find one that’s new and fresh I like to pull it. Weaving surprise pranks into find the difference and hidden object style games only makes sense, however it’s super critical that you expose the prank during peak concentration and not after. Making a tweak to how the prank is triggered would make a world of difference with this app. If it were triggered based on time within a level instead of the end of the level the result of the prank would be night and day in my opinion. Hopefully this is a tweak that’s made in the near future. If it is, I definitely recommend snatching this app up for a good laugh!
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Requirements: iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad; iPhone OS 3.0 or later
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