Sunday, May 27, 2012


Last week I finished another iOS game: Batman Arkham City Lockdown. Loosely based on the characters and style created in Batman Arkham Asylum and Batman Arkham City, it´s essentially a fighting game. In every mission you´re supposed to defeat a number of thugs tapping and swiping on the screen at the appropriate time to counter-effect the enemies´ attacks.

The basic combat works most of the time (some of the tactile inputs are poorly recognized, leading to frustration) and the visuals are very good for the platform. However the game becomes quickly repetitive because of the lack of secondary challenges. No collectible items, no optional features to break the constant flow of brawling. Just fighting all the time. You can buy upgrades with the xp, but that´s all. Bosses include unique additional challenges, like aftertouch or cleaning up the screen, making me think why not using those mechanics in the rest of the game too.

It cost 5 euros, and frankly I expected a little more for that money. Not a bad investment since its gameplay is related to my current project, but still not the best purchase I´ve made in the app store.

Sunday, May 20, 2012


I have an idiosincrasy about games: Whenever I buy one, I finish it. And now I´m going to break that rule with Dead Rising.

Some friends told me it was really entertaining, and I bought it. I should have had in mind they were truly hardcore gamers. I´ve never been attracted by the zombie theme (the game waited on my shelf for 5 years), but technically it was an interesting twist because of the number of enemies on screen. Why not enjoy it?

My, what a hardcore game. It rarely offers second chances, save points are difficult to find, missions are time based (you need to activate them before the counter reaches zero) but offers little communication about failing conditions. Side quests are poorly balanced and offer more frustration than joy, not to mention their interface is really annoying.

Essentially you´re supposed to fail, restart the game from the beginning, learn from your mistakes and try to avoid them to progress a little more until you have to restart the game again.

In other words, another japanese game that forces you play by its rules, not allowing the user enjoy it in the way he wants. I don´t have time for that, sorry.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


And I finished my second iOS game: PUZZLE QUEST 2. It was recommended to me by Lolo, a friend, and I have mixed feelings about it.

On one hand I appreciate the mix of RPG elements with a basic puzzle system, but on the other the game becomes repetitive really fast. The production values are quite high for a mobile game, there is an interesting number of different enemies, spells and scenarios to visit. But they´re all 2D, and possibly handled by different artists since there are subtle style differences in characters and drawings. Also the game was prone to shut down itself from time to time, but the RPG element keeps you interested in your hero, as well as the story pushing you for finding what´s next.

The thing I liked the most was the fact that you can adapt gameplay to your needs. Each puzzle fight takes 5-10 min to be completed, which is very convenient for some short play sessions I have along the day (i.e. subway trips). That´s the main reason why I kept playing, and why I finished it. But ey, I only recommend it if you´re an RPG fan ;)