Ascend the deadliest tomb in ‘Tomb of the Mask’ [Game of the Week]

This action-packed retro-style game features smooth controls and fluid gameplay

Tomb of the Mask title screen

Tomb of the Mask is a fun action game that sends you deep into the titular tomb.

The tomb is a vertical labyrinth — inside you spot a mask. Donning it, you realize you can run up walls.

Playing Tomb of the Mask is a nostalgia trip of sorts. The game’s pixelated art and design remind me of old Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) games.

Aside from the beautiful retro design, the game features simple, smooth controls that feel fluid. You swipe in the direction you want to go. Your character, named TravelBoy, hurls himself in that direction until he collides with a wall. The phone vibrates subtly on impact, giving a weight to your actions.

TravelBoy waits eagerly for your next swipe.

Tomb of the Mask level

This is how you navigate the labyrinth, zipping from wall to wall, floor to ceiling, slowly ascending higher. The labyrinth, however, is full of traps and enemies. Bats will attack you, spikes will impale you.

Should you misstep and find yourself on the pointy end of a spike, you’ll lose energy. Think of it as a life system. Energy replenishes over time, or you can purchase more. Alternatively, you can also just ‘get good’ and not die.

Play modes

Tomb of the Mask features two main modes of play. The first is a ‘stage based’ mode. Players must navigate many levels of the Tomb, dodging traps and learning new skills.

The second game type is the arcade mode that doesn’t cost energy to play. The vertical labyrinth is infinite, allowing you to climb as high as you can — just don’t die.

In both modes, levels are filled with dots. Collecting the dots in stage mode rewards you with coins. In arcade mode, these dots increase your score.

Tomb of the Mask game modes

Additionally, stage mode features stars. Collecting them all earns three-star ratings on completed levels. Instead of stars, arcade mode includes coins you can collect.

Players can use coins to purchase new masks, which provide bonuses like extra coins, bigger score boosters and more.

You can also purchase power-ups with coins. These can be shields, or a thing that turns all dots into coins, or a freeze for all enemies and traps.

While coins can be earned in-game quite easily, there is an option to buy coins as well.

Too many ads

Overall, Tomb of the Mask is a fun action game. Climbing the tomb certainly has an addictive quality to it. Furthermore, the game looks absolutely fantastic.

However, there’s one caveat: the game is ad-supported. The upshot to this is that it’s free-to-play, but as a result, is also riddled with ads.

The ads pop up after every stage and when you open the game. Normally I can tolerate advertisements — developers need to make money after all — but Tomb of the Mask is excessive.

You can turn off ads by purchasing the game for $4.49.

Alternatively, the game offers a ‘diamond membership’ option. This gives you four unique masks, unlimited energy and 400 coins every day. It removes ads as well.

The diamond membership costs an absurd $9.99 per week. As great as this game is, I can’t recommend paying some $40 a month for it.

The game is, however, worth the $4.49 to remove ads. I think it’s that good, but you can try it for free and judge for yourself.

Tomb of the Mask is available on iOS and Android. Enter the tomb if you dare.