Mark Cerny's wildly popular arcade classic Marble Madness has been inspiring game developers ever since debuting in 1984, and Sky Ball is the latest vertigo-inducing endless runner in that lineage. iPhone and Android gamers seem to agree, vaulting this new game to the top of the app store charts. You, too, can get airborne today -- for free (download for Android, download for iOS), with the only in-app purchase being ad removal for $2.99.
As you speed up, your viewing angle gets more vertical, and the distances between platforms gets longer.
Your only interaction with the ball is to steer it left and right with horizontal swipes.
As you get further in, the colors of the platforms may change.
If you hit these chevrons and the ramp at the end, you'll go flying.
Daily logins give you daily rewards.
You'll collect gems on the platforms, which you can use to buy cosmetic items like this red-and-white striped ball.
...And sometimes the cosmetics are a little less interesting.
Completing challenges also nets you some bonus gems. Note that gems cannot be purchased with actual money -- they must be earned in-game.
You'll sometimes get the chance to play a little Wheel of Fortune for extra loot.
Platform color changes are also determined by unlocking new blocks.
In the case of Sky Ball, the typical endless runner stakes are raised by making you descend through an endless series of platforms, with sheer and deadly drop-offs on either side. As you get further down, things get more complex; the platforms start sliding back and forth, and your movement speed changes dramatically according to how well you launch off the ramp at each end.
Sometimes you fall off the side of a platform first and lose most of your momentum, which can make it impossible to reach the next one. Other times, the distance to the next platform is so vast that you can't initially see where it is until you're already descending.
Thankfully, the controls are dead-simple: You just slide a finger left and right to make your ball shift left and right. There isn't even a jump button. That makes it easy to play one-handed, but there's still plenty of challenge involved.