Snagging a decent game on the App Store is like hunting Bigfoot whilst blindfolded. Combing through games that could be easily called shovelware (if shovelware wasn’t basically the standard for most of these snoozefests) looking for something even moderately enticing turns what should be blissful game browsing into a grueling chore.
Thankfully enough, it didn’t take long for me to find Does Not Commute. This quirky commuting sim is currently kicking my ass in all the best ways, and I’m glad to have it on my device. As it was free-to-play with a premium option, I approached Does Not Commute with the confidence a modern day musician without Auto-Tune, however the atmosphere and to-the-point gameplay, as well as the modest price, eased my concerns and made the full purchase of the game all the easier.
In Does Not Commute, you plan the routes of a plethora of drivers as they rush to make appointments, skip work, transfer obscene amounts of money they earned though their snake oil businesses, and so on. You have a certain time limit to guide these characters though the neighbourhood one at a time (each run-through is layered on top of the previous ones, giving you more to dodge with each iteration) until you are spirited to the next section of the city. Crashes, hilarious though they may be, cause your somehow indestructible car to move slower, and you can retry a failed route for a dedication of one second from your overall remaining time. You can mercifully prolong your time limit by picking up tokens which are placed throughout the map, usually in painfully inconvenient locations. This all adds up to a game with a decent balance of skill and strategy required for completion, but which avoids being device-chuckingly frustrating.
Each character has a unique back-story which is quirky enough to keep the mood light, even if you are causing thousands of dollars in personal property damage. Each level even has a replay function that lets you get several perspectives of your total commute. It may help you plan for the next run-through, but will most likely give you a chuckle as you reflect on how terrible you are (in every conceivable way) at this game.
Yes, that was a sloppily-placed Wizard of Oz metaphor, but so what? It’s Sunday, and I’ll be damned if I have to finish strong on the weekend.