Popular iOS title Temple Run making its way to Android to chase off imitators

by Phil Hornshaw

In the iTunes App Store, 3-D endless running title Temple Run is extremely popular – so popular, it’s been copied more than once. It also has its doppelgangers in the Android Market, but now developer Imangi Studios is bringing the official game to Android in all its original glory.

If you’re unfamiliar, Temple Run has players running along a temple road through a swamp, making twists and turns and hopping over obstacles to avoid getting overtaken by pursuing enemies. It’s not unlike other running titles in the mobile game space, but Temple Run has pretty great presentation and something of a unique take on a well-worn genre.

Temple Run first hit Apple’s App Store back in August 2011, and it’s already notched some 40 million downloads. Also, It has weathered a few other developers trying to piggyback on its success: back in February, Apple kicked an app out of the store called Temple Jump that seemed to be a thinly veiled attempt at tricking people into thinking it was Temple Run. The idea was that users would find Temple Jump erroneously, pay for it, and only realize too late that they’d paid for a game that wasn’t actually Temple Run.

The Android Market currently sports a few apps that seem like Temple Run-alikes, though none seem as blatant as Temple Jump. Still, Imangi Studios (an operation of only three people) obviously knows there’s a big untapped market on Android for its game given its success on iOS.

According to a press release, Android players will finally be able to get their hands on the official Temple Run on March 27. The game will be free to download and include in-app purchases of in-game currency and other items – a system commonly known as “freemium.”

Even if players don’t opt for the in-app purchases, however, they should have plenty of free fun with Temple Run, if the iPhone version is any indication.