Nostalgia ain’t what it used to be, but try telling that to Snake ‘97 by dsd 164, the new retro-fitted Snake game for iPhones. We all remember the ‘90s fondly; it was a decade of well-intentioned afterschool specials, butterfly clips, girl/boy bands and, most importantly, it was when the mobile phone became a widespread and universal tool. With this came the obvious fashion challenges of matching your mobile case with your sunglasses for that day, choosing which upbeat ringtone to set (will it be jungle jingle or a straightforward doorbell? I believe friendships were forged and broken over this very question) and, of course, spending lunch furiously trying to beat your friend’s high-score on Snake.
Snake ‘97 has pulled out all the stops to ensure that you have a Proustian rush upon opening this delightful and addictive game and goes so far as to offer you the choice of which dented and scratched classic mobile body that you would like to it play on. For me, it’s a no brainer with the Nokia 3310: when I was younger, I spent a good portion of my allowance on a black case with a pretty rude teddy on the back of it suggesting that you should ‘snuggle his middle finger’ – I was a going through a phase at this time…
The dot-matrix display and monotone sounds makes this game as frustratingly addictive as the original. After my first round (7 points) I spent the next half-hour absorbed, trying everything I could to stop that damn snake from eating itself.
The app comes with no instruction: you simply launch, touch a button and begin. This is not only true to form from the original Snake but a refreshing change from the app needing your number, your email, the name of your first born and what you had for lunch that day.
The only drawback that I feel I have to warn against is the advertisements. They start off small, asking for a review after your first 10 or so games then become more and more frequent until you’re forced to sit and wait patiently whilst a moving banner ad pushes the never-dying Frozen franchise in your face. However, this is, I think, a small(ish) price to pay for getting to play your favourite throwback game again, but I’ll leave that decision up to you.
If you’re hankering for a bit of ‘90s fun then you can either download Snake ‘97 from the App Store or play for free on poki.com.