A Flawed iPhone Experience
Half-Inch Heist presents the idea of a bullethell dodging game with promise and panache. You take control of a robber attempting to steal a diamond, and in order to do so, you must help that diamond evade the violently dangerous automated security system controlled by an evil cat, Dr. Puss. And it does so with pretty decent retro music and a sparse but acceptable sprite-based art style. Where does it go wrong?
Unfortunately, the problems come in very quickly. Half-Inch Heist's diamond and obstacles are incredibly small on an iPhone, and the game's intense difficulty is exemplified by the fact that your finger is usually bigger than the bosses you fight. It's impossible to see what you're supposed to be dodging if it doesn't move in a straight line for a couple seconds beforehand, and often moments of perceived success are game-over scenarios because your diamond has been shattered by a stray robotic bee let out by the Air Bear, or a robotic squid that apparently moved while it was under your finger.
This isn't helped by the fact that, in order to continue a playthrough, you'll probably have to either spend some money or defeat the bosses upwards of five or ten times. The initial number of coins required for a revive is 300; when I defeated the Air Bear, I received close to twenty-five. While the in-app purchase option mitigates this problem, it feels downright antagonistic towards iPhone users, who will be struggling with intense playability issues already.
Half-Inch Heist is effectively unplayable on an iPhone. While the iPad experience may be acceptable, the problems with the mobile version make it impossible to enjoy. It's still a nice momentary novelty, and it is totally and completely free. But between the excessive pushing of in-app purchases in the early going and the playability issues, it's not a game I'd really recommend to anyone on the iPhone.