Combine charming graphics and addictive gameplay with daredveil stunt-diving, and what do you get? Besides the occasional man-shaped hole in the ground, you get an entry from our 3rd Casual Gameplay Design Competition.
Paracaidas ("parachute" in Spanish) is from Scheletro, a very talented newcomer to our competitions. It's the tale of a dedicated stunt performer who is never satisfied until he has either safely missed his target, or mysteriously closed his parachute and plummeted to his death.
Using only the [spacebar] you must drop a skydiver from a passing plane, and again with the [spacebar] you must open his parachute at just the right time to achieve the target, taking into account the wind speed and direction. You get more points the longer your chute is open before landing, and a bonus multiplier for how close you get to a bullseye. For extra bonus points you can try to collect a shiny gold star that is randomly placed on the screen.
You can continue to replay the game as long as you continue to hit the target. Miss the target and the game is immediately over. You can also inexplicable close your chute with [spacebar] which almost always results in your death, and of course the game ends then as well.
Analysis: This is one of the simplest games I've played in quite a while, yet I found myself coming back to it again and again. The graphics are charming and delightful, especially the satisfying hole in the ground you make after putting away the chute too soon. I was initially unimpressed with its "replay" value, but had to give Scheletro credit after I had been "replaying" his game for about 20 minutes straight.
My main problem with the game is with the ability to close the parachute: it's completely worthless. It seems its only value is to quickly finish an obviously failed jump, and in that it excels. It would seem natural to be able to lose the 'chute and drop a few feet onto the target, if the wind were about to make you overshoot it, for instance. That doesn't even work though since a drop of only a few inches without a parachute is still instant death. It seems too intentional a feature to be so pointless, yet I fail to see its value. Perhaps Scheletro was also a victim of running out of time, as were a few other of our entrants?