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High Heels! blew up on Tiktok, and now everyone’s playing it

Everyone’s playing this silly game about walking in high heels

a person wearing a tall set of heels with a dog in a backpack Image: Rollic Games/Zynga via Polygon
Nicole Carpenter is a senior reporter specializing in investigative features about labor issues in the game industry, as well as the business and culture of games.

Nearly every ad I see on TikTok is for this video game about walking in comically high-heeled shoes. High Heels! is inescapable — so I downloaded it this afternoon. The only break I’ve taken from playing it is to write this blog. I’m trapped in high heels jail and surrounded on all sides by ads for video games about makeovers.

I have watched as my heels got so ludicrously high that my character — I’m playing as a knockoff Agent 47 from Hitman, complete with the barcode neck tattoo — got pushed out of the screen. I have watched him, in his rainbow-colored heels, tumble off the perpetual catwalk and ragdoll into the ether.

You may have seen the videos, too. Ads for High Heels! are all over TikTok and in free-to-play gaming apps. Gameplay videos of High Heels! are also going viral on TikTok and Twitter. “I found a game for baddies,” one popular TikTok clip reads. “You basically walk like a bad bitch in high heels. My ankles could never.” The video has been viewed nearly 4 million times.

This is, indeed, the premise of High Heels! As you collect heels on the obstacle course, your shoes get higher. That’s essential, because your shoes need to be higher than obstacles to get over them. After clearing an obstacle, you’re knocked down a few inches and need to collect more heels to make it to the celebration runway, where a circle of fans are waiting for you.

If you’re still confused, here’s what developer Rollic — which was acquired by casual gaming powerhouse Zynga last year — says about it on the App Store:

Are you ready for the best high heels game EVER?

Watch out for the walls! The taller your heels are, the easier it will be to escape from the walls. Different obstacles await you at each level! There are rails where you have to spread your legs and slide, walls to jump, a stick to balance and a huge podium waiting for you at the end of the road. Among the dozens of different accessories you can buy in the store, there are buckles, necklaces, puppies in a bag, and angel wings. And most importantly, you can find heels with very different models and colors to suit your style!

Walking on the heels will make you feel like a QUEEN!

Don’t forget! You need to pick as many as high heels on the road so you can walk on a podium!

There are a variety of different obstacles to stomp over, but my favorite of which is the split; to make it past, your heels need to be long enough to hold you up as you straddle a gap. The character (in my case, knockoff Agent 47, who I unlocked by watching three ads) claps while sliding.

Agent 47 recreated in High Heels! Image: Rollic Games/Zynga via Polygon

Unsurprisingly, High Heels! has taken off and is now a meme. You’ll want to check out the Apple App Store’s ratings and reviews, of which there are plenty (just under 38,000) detailing the elaborate and hilarious ways the game saved lives. Here’s my theory: The game is the perfect amount of highly-satisfying gameplay and meme content paired with a player base that increasingly wants to be stepped on.

It’s also free for Android devices on the Google Play store. The ads are pretty excessive, but there’s a paid version, too.

Rollic’s High Heels! may be a short-lived App Store star, but the developer knows how to make a hit. Blob Runner 3D, another Rollic-made game, is currently #2 on the App Store.

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