Das Uberleben, German for "The Survival", is a neat little action arcade game, and no, the game isn't in German. The author just got a little creative with the title.
Uberleben's premise is very simple. You're skydiving with a broken parachute through incredibly dangerous environments, fighting to stay alive. You have to avoid jagged walls and other obstacles until your parachute finally deploys. It's similar to a 3D Jumpman or a game like Aaaaa! The controls are very simple: up, down, left and right. Wind buffets you all the way down giving a degree of unpredictability to the movement and adding to the whole "out of control" atmosphere. Narrowly avoiding death by inches as a tree or wall swooshes by is a good adrenaline rush.
The game's graphical style is really neat. It's a nice mix of 2D and 3D graphics. It was a creative design choice, but very fitting. The different levels all have a lot contrast and the effect of the land rushing past on all sides can be kind of psychedelic. The screenshots don't really do it justice. The game looks a lot better in motion.
The game offers plenty of options. Up to seven players can play on a single computer because of the simple controls: 4 on the keyboard, 1 on the mouse and 2 with joysticks. There are different levels to choose from including a volcano with gigantic man-eating lava worms, a mine with killer energy balls, a desert, featuring a psychedelic windstorm effect, and the Death Star. Fighting can be turned on for added fun; players knock each other around the screen when they collide. You can also turn on various types of spin, causing the level to spin like crazy as you fall. Warning: this setting not recommended for those who become queasy easily. You can also turn off the blood. Thanks to the developer for including that feature for younger players.
Uberleben is fun in short periods, but ultimately lacks replayability. However, the game gets more fun exponentially with more people. It's the kind of brainless activity that's good for groups. My two gripes are the lack of any music and the difficulty level. Cue up some epic tracks in the background and the game instantly becomes awesome. Unfortunately everybody doesn't have a library of epic tracks on their hard drive. Also, it's rare that anyone will ever make it to the end of the level playing in big groups. There are different difficulty levels that change the length of the levels, but the easiest difficulty level could stand to be easier. Overall, Uberleben is a simple but fun little game that's fun with friends and worth the download.