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Ho, ho, whoa! Temple Run 2 lets you play as Santa Claus

The latest update also sprinkles in a waterslide and some Christmas artifacts along the perilous path.

Watch out for that giant ape, Santa!
Watch out for that giant ape, Santa!
Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Temple Run 2 players can add a bit of Christmas spirit to their gameplay.

Released this week for iOS and Android, a holiday update to the death-defying running game brings Santa Claus down the chimney. You now can play the role of Jolly Old Saint Nick as you try to escape the giant ape, dodge and weave your way past obstacles, and collect gems and other treasures to build up your score.

Other surprises await. You can wend your way down a waterslide as you try to avoid fallen trees and other hazards. The game also promises Christmas artifacts that you can unlock and mysterious masks to add to your collection.

But the makers of Temple Run 2 are a bit stingy with Santa. Playing as Saint Nick requires 60 gems. Those of you who don't have them in your arsenal will have to pony up as much as $6.99 as an in-app purchase to acquire them.

Still, the latest update adds some holiday fun and should offer good cheer to all those fellow Temple Run 2 addicts out there.