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Temple Run: Oz

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Just as Temple Run: Brave didn’t do much to change up the popular franchise’s free-running formula, Temple Run: Oz — Disney’s latest Temple tie-in — similarity sticks to the series’ tried-and-true template. Where Merida’s lap around the coin-cluttered maze borrowed heavily from the original Temple Run though, Oz’s sprint emulates its sequel. While Temple Run 2 with a wonderful world of Oz paint-job might not excite longtime followers of the seat-of-the-pants series, fans of the film should have a blast hauling hide down the yellow brick road.

As with previous installments, players jump, slide, and turn with simple finger swipes, while tilting their tablet or smartphone steers the character into long stretches of shiny coins. Along the way, power-ups are grabbed, levels are unlocked, and points are earned. In true Temple Run tradition, the protagonist’s urgent journey also provides a tremendous sense of speed, ensuring players’ hearts race as fast as their fingers.

While the experience will mostly feel familiar to anyone who’s stayed up past their bed time playing Temple Run 2, Oz does separate itself from the sequel by mining its movie source material to great effect. For starters, it’s the prettiest entry in the series do date. Whether you’re hoofing it through a lush forest or hightailing it around a spooky graveyard, you’ll find it difficult not to rubberneck the detail-drenched surroundings. Slick animations, such as tree roots sprouting in your path or headstones crumbling before you, also do a great job injecting this beauty into the lightning-paced gameplay.

Other fun film-to-game touches include a mini-game that sees players navigating Oz‘s hot air balloon through the clouds to collect bonus coins, as well as plenty of appearances by the movie’s infamous flying monkeys — if you thought Temple Run was fast before, just try playing it with a peeved primate on your tail.

Longtime fans looking for something new should probably stick to the superior Temple Run 2. However, if you’re an Oz fan who’s always dreamed of following the yellow brick road — at a record-breaking pace — you can’t beat Temple Run: Oz‘s fleet-footed fan service. B

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