Darting from floor to ceiling to spinning platform in Dandara feels amazing.

Like a gravity-defying ninja, you dash around this world dodging incoming attacks with your right thumb before firing back with a flick of your left.

For all its dynamic action, Dandara is ultimately a game about exploration. Like Nintendo’s Metroid games, our hero gains new abilities as you explore, allowing you to gradually open up new parts of a huge, interconnected gameworld.

It’s an unusual combination of quick action and thoughtful navigation, but it works brilliantly. If you’re not pinging around atmospheric underground caverns taking out enemies, you’re checking the map to figure out where to explore next.

Areas you thought you’d figured out already are made fresh with each new ability gained, and a memorable mid-game sequence serves up further revelations and twists to the tale.

The mix of action and exploration is punctuated with encounters with strange characters imprisoned deep inside Dandara’s world. And as you follow Dandara’s quest to rise up against oppression, there are parallels with the real-world Brazilian warrior that shares this game’s name.

Very few games on the App Store offer such intuitive play within such a deep, evocative world. Dandara’s offering of unexpected mechanics and satisfying structure give this game a spirit and attitude all of its own. Dive in.

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