Time Wasters: KAYAC Games’ Weird As Hell iPhone Apps

KAYAC is a Japanese developer with a handful of titles in the iTunes App store that feel like spiritual successors to the infernal game modes of the under-loved PSP minigame collection, Work Time Fun. Each one involves a single flick or swipe mechanic on your iPhone screen for 20 second bursts of scored gameplay, and right now five of their games are free in the App store. The typical synopsis goes a little something like this:

“Fish Man” is a simple fish cutting game.
Fish men are running around. Cut them as speedily as possible!

That’s obviously from the game Fish Man (here’s its iTunes page), and in those few words, you pretty much get the gist of what you’re doing in those games.

We don’t do a ton of mobile game coverage here, and these games are pretty uncomplicated and basic, but taken together (and owing to my how much, again, their WTF-ness remind me of Work Time Fun), I thought I’d point you in their direction and let you see if it was worth checking out for yourself.

Each of the games has the same idiosyncratic, horror art style, an odd confluence of excessive cross-hatching given the appearance of hand-drawn animation for the main figures on the screen set against stark black backgrounds. There’s a preoccupation with body horror among several of the titles, with mutant figures dominating the screen, along with twisted faces and grotesque freaks.

Kill Bee (link) has you flicking the tongue of a bug-eyed lizard man at, as you would guess from the title, a swarm of dragonflies. The gimmick here is that you have to flick in the opposite direction of where the dragonflies are in order to hit them. In KAYAC’s other cranially-fixated game, Rotate Head, just keep tapping on the face in the center of the screen until it completely distorts and explodes.

Ugly Hand is maybe the best animated game of the lot, requiring you to swipe away at the back of your onscreen hand as mutant faces grow there.

Finally, Worm Bowls has moving a pair of onscreen hands back and forth to catch a falling shower of worms. Presumably so the bloated face in the background can munch them right up.

Again, there’s very little in the way of depth for these games, and more than anything else, they’re simple (and for the moment, free) 20-second time wasters. At the same time, that’s actually kind of the virtue of these micro-downloads. If would be great if KAYAC could compile them somehow into a larger framework like Work Time Fun (because I’ll never not want more of that game) but for now we can content ourselves with being creeped out with these standalone titles.

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