App Club: geoSpark. How’d We Do?

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I don’t want to talk about geoSpark yet. I want to talk about Doodle Jump for a second. Hear me out.

Doodle Jump is an awesome little app. You play a little Qbert-like jumping beastie. He jumps. He jumps up a series of platforms. Sometimes the platforms move. Sometimes they have springy things on them that sproing him upward, or a propeller hat or a jetpack.

The thing about Doodle Jump is, there are no levels or waves or extra guys. So you’re just jumping up and up and up, and if you die, you start all over again at the bottom. So the higher you get, the more the pressure mounts, until eventually you’re completely losing it. You’re sweating bullets. The chance of your screwing up on any one jump is infinitesimal. But the chance of your screwing up eventually, on a jump, is 100%.

That’s what geoSpark was like for me. No levels, no extra guys, just spark after spark after spark, till those glowy little sparks broke my spirit and turned me into a pathetic shivering wreck of my former self.

I didn’t beat geoSpark this week. I don’t even know if it ends. I’m at 14,950 right now, the part where you’re facing squads of pulsing orange circus-peanut guys. (It’s cool to see the creeps from geoDefense Swarm come back in spark form.) I can’t even say I evolved a strategy. I tried to see the board kind of like a skiier sees a slope: you grab a spark and then pick a line, then you swoop along it and try not to die.

Leading cause of death? Forgetting what kind of spark I was dragging around under my finger, and smacking it into the wrong kind. Or my hand would be blocking the lower right-hand corner of the screen and I’d miss two sparks who were hell-bent on fatally mating with each other.

I remember when I was a kid, my sister tried to explain her incredible mastery of Robotron to me — how in order to attain true mastery, you had to enter a mystical state beyond normal consciousness. You had to focus on every part of the screen at once, and at the same time see the entire screen as a whole. A true geoSpark adept could probably do that.

Not me though. I’m out. It was fun, but geoSpark stresses me out too much. I’m going to go wind down with some relaxing Modern Warfare 2.

Go ahead, crush me with news of your sick geoSpark scores in the comments. My self esteem is dangerously high today.