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Semi Secret’s “Gravity Hook HD” Makes You Upwardly Mobile

Semi Secret’s “Gravity Hook HD” Makes You Upwardly Mobile (photo)

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You know, the great thing about the speed and breadth of the iPhone development ecosystem is being able to watch creators grow and refine their ideas. The gentlemen at Semi-Secret Games made one of my favorite iDevice titles in “Canabalt”, where players ran and jumped through dynamically generated levels of a post-apocalyptic cityscape.

07292010_gravity_hook_screenshot1.jpg“Gravity Hook HD” is their latest release, which actually revisits an older game that they iterated on with the permission of original creator Arne Niklas Jansson. This new HD version shows off a much-improved look and feel, along with significant gameplay tweaks. You control a robot grappling his way ever upward through an ever-changing vertical environment. The grapple points are always in different locations and some of them are explosive.

You can feel the evolution of Semi Secret’s reflex-intensive design ideas in GHHD. Whereas “Canabalt” was purely a quick-response game, “Gravity Hook” still requires you to read the screen and then make a decision about where to clamp onto next. But you’ll also need to judge the speed and height of your jumps. All of that has to happens in seconds. It’s stressful, addictive fun like “Canabalt”, but with a layer or two more mechanics built into the gameplay.

And the best part of lots of indie developers’ philosophies is the open-source mentality that accompanies it. Semi-Secret’s provided a free, embeddable web version of Gravity Hook HD. (No, really… here it is.) It’s the best kind of marketing because, when you move away from your computer, you’ll still want to try and master it.

Thankfully, it’s only $2.99. Find “Gravity Hook HD” on iTunes right here.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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