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Nobody Said It Was Easy (Mobile) Review

/ Feb 10th, 2015 No Comments

Nobody Said It Was Easy will more than likely have players snapping their phones in half. Released on the iOS, the 8-bit platformer developed by Cup of Joe Games is a frustrating and challenging game that is controlled by only two simple buttons. One button has the avatar run, while the other has it jump — simple enough if 1,001 things weren’t trying to kill players. Nobody Said It Was Easy leads with an honest smile and even more honest middle-finger, but a bad game it is not.

I Pray for Death, and It Comes

Why does the avatar of Nobody Said It Was Easy traverse these mazes? Do they do it for power? For glory? Maybe it’s just for the sick thrill, but that’s beside the point. While not having a story, the game makes up for it in sheer replay value. The only requirement of each level is to reach the exit. With this in mind, players are able to go back to collect all the stars interspersed throughout the levels, to achieve that great feeling of 100 percent completion.

They call me the hip-hopopotamus, because my jumping skills are bottomless.

They call me the hip-hopopotamus, because my jumping skills are bottomless.

As with any mobile game, competition is inherent in the system. Competing with friends for high scores and better times will shine further light on the addictive nature of Nobody Said It Was Easy. For a more difficult challenge, players can see how many levels they can complete without dying.

Don’t Touch the Electric Fence

Luckily, the buttons for running and jumping perfectly fit the players hand for the inevitable snapping in half of their phone. Players must use walls in Nobody Said It Was easy to turn themselves around directionally, otherwise it’s just running and jumping. This simple mechanic keeps the game easy to pick up, hard to put down, and even harder to actually beat. Simple controls allow for the difficulty to be in the game itself, not in its operation.

There is no God here, God is dead.

There is no God here, God is dead.

There are a number of pitfalls with a steady learning curve to implement new mechanics to gameplay. The very first level offers a simple jumping challenge to demonstrate mechanics, but the second level shifts thing into fourth gear. With each new mechanic, players learn to perfect it in about 10 levels before changing to another in a rinse-and-repeat formula. The one true difficulty in gameplay is star collecting. While the goal remains to reach the flag exit in each level, upon completing a set of 10 levels, players must have collected a certain number of stars in order to progress forward.

Cup of Joe’s Carnival

Levels are designed in a very basic 8-bit graphic style with simple color schemes. This color scheme allows quick differentiation between avatar, platforms and obstacles. Being able to quickly identify enemies is essential in Nobody Said It Was Easy as many have a simple movement program that requires quick reactions by players. The blank avatar choice gives players a palette on which to put themselves, which aids frustration in having nobody else to blame for constant deaths.

Also worth noting is that the color scheme doesn’t fall to the common problem of incredibly similar choices between interacting objects. The main example is that the platforms are white while enemies are typically a redish-brown, which helps walk that fine line between hard to beat and impossible to beat.

Seeing quadruple? It's just the triptocaine. Fight through it.

Seeing quadruple? It’s just the triptocaine. Fight through it.

Music and sound effects are perfect. A quick, simple death and jump noise, mixed with a circus merry-go-round-like tune provide a fun atmosphere. Having an upbeat soundtrack in a puzzle-platformer again helps players toe that fine line between being fun and frustrated. The merry-go-round theme music is perfectly orchestrated to not be grating, but instead relaxing, and thus bring a smile to players face even as they hit that same set of spikes again and again.

Order Up

Cup of Joe Games provides a well made challenge in Nobody Said It Was Easy. Part puzzle game, part platformer, it delivers on a variety of levels. Players may well be enticed by the fact it is free. There is a paid version of the game that removes ads, but save for a few ads blocking levels inconveniently, the free version plays well. Cup of Joe Games also boasts a few other games such as Nerdy Workout that are well worth a try for iOS gamers. Now, put the pot on, it’s a fine blend.


Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson

Associate Editor at Gaming Illustrated
Greg is a Nintendo fanboy who would cry if they ever went third party. He writes news, previews and reviews at Gaming Illustrated.
Greg Johnson

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Gaming Illustrated RATING



Addictive, challenging and most importantly, simple. The controls flow nicely and open up the true finesse of Nobody Said It Was Easy which is the challenge of reaching the exit.


While nothing to write home about, the simple graphics make distinguishing between enemy and platform easy and fit with the game's arcade atmosphere. A nice set of color choices only brightens this distinction and shows the well thought out choices put into the game.


Nobody Said It Was Easy has a musical backdrop that will lift spirits, keep feelings light and ensure no phones are harmed in the playing of this game. The simple sound effects also add a nice touch, bringing an arcade quality to the game.


Challenging and fun, Nobody Said It Was Easy isn't just about reaching the exit, but collecting enough stars to play other levels, an objective that will take multiple runs.

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