App of the Week: 'Temple Run 2'
PHOTO: Temple Run 2 provides players with the same bridge jumping, monkey fleeing fun found in Temple Run, but with improved graphics.

Image credit: Imangi Studios, LLC.

App Name: 'Temple Run 2'

Price: Free

Available Platforms: iOS

What does this app do?: "Temple Run," developed by Imangi Studios, has enjoyed more than 170 million downloads since its release in 2011.

This week, Imangi Studios released "Temple Run 2? for iOS. This single-player video game challenges users to survive for as long as possible. Assuming the role as Guy Dangerous, players collect coins and overcome obstacles while continuously running from an evil monkey that, at times, is just on your heels.

Open the game and begin running, swiping from side to side to turn left or right. Swipe up the screen to jump over cliffs, collapsed bridges and fires. Swipe down and you will slide to avoid smashing into obstacles such as stone walls. Tilt your mobile device to either side to collect coins placed along the course but, most importantly, keep on running! There's an angry monkey behind you and you don't want him to catch up.

"Temple Run 2? lets you swap out different avatars and offers distinct "power-ups" for each character, providing a sense of variety for each one. Open the menu button, tap the "upgrades" button, and choose from four different characters; For 5,000 coins, you can change your player from Guy Dangerous to Scarlett Fox, for example.

Overall, "Temple Run 2? offers noticeably smoother graphics from the previous version. Along the various courses, the lush, green backgrounds, misty cloud cover and pink-stained sky are a big improvement from the more monotonous environments in the former version.

The developers improved the main menu screen, too. Instead of tapping on words such as "stats" or "objectives" flatly spread out on the screen, the newer version displays tiles illustrated with icons to help you navigate your options within the app.

Is it easy to set up?: Yes, once you download the app, launch it and go.

Should I try it?: The upgraded graphics, additional courses and the ability to "power-up" make this already addictive app worth downloading. However, keep in mind this is a freemium game, which means it is free to download and play, but you will need to pay for additional services. In this case, the app offers coin bundles for you to purchase to help your character stay alive. Once your player dies, for example, a "save me" message pops up on the screen. Tap "yes" and the app displays a menu of in-app purchases; for $.99 you can get a 5-gem pack, or for $19.99 you can load up on a 400,000-coin pack too keep you running longer. Whether you choose to buy coin packs or see how far you get for free, "Temple Run 2? will keep players busy.

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