Search Results for: label/RPG/index.html

Number of Results: 19

Dragon Island Blue [NNT Resonant] – $0.99

Over the last year, we’ve seen quite a few ‘Pokemon’ like games hit the AppStore; Mighty Monsters, Pocket Summoner, Minimon, MinoMonsters and more, with even more slated for future release. MinoMonsters was a decent Pokemon-esque experience, but with some recent updates has pretty much gone down the drain, and no one else has really nailed the different aspects of gameplay. Well, NNT Resonant (Cats Away [$0.99], iGADGET [$2.99], Berzerk Ball [$0.99], GemCraft [$2.99] and Hex Empire [$0.99]) is now taking a crack at the genre with their new release, Dragon Island Blue. 
Dragon Island Blue tells the story of a young boy who’s found a dragon egg, which, for a long time, were thought to be extinct. This starts your journey of collecting, battling, evolving, destroying and mixing over 200 different monsters. Starting off, you’re able to pick a element for your dragon; Earth, Wind, Fire or Water. Like NNT Resonant’s previous release, Cats Away, D.I.B. starts off pretty slowly, requiring quite a bit of ‘grinding’ before you actually get into the real meat of the game, but once you do make it through the slow beginning, the game starts to really shine, turning into one of the best Pokemon-type games available for the iOS. 
When you start off, you’ll only have access to one area. This area contains a main village, a forest, planes, and a cave. Movement is done by tapping on selected areas of the map, with battles popping up randomly. Once you’re in a battle, you’ll have two different options for control. One, lets you select the attack you want to pull off, and then select which enemy you want to attack, while the other has you swipe over the enemy you want to attack in the direction of the arrow on each attack card. 
Depending on which attack you use, you’ll be knocked back in the battle sequence. The battle sequence determines who attacks and when. If you use your regular attack, you’ll be given a lower number, and a higher number for a stronger attack. Each turn that’s made will decrease this number, and once it reaches zero, you’ll be able to attack again. 
There is a bit of strategy within the battle system, given the battle sequence and various attacks that you can use. But also, when you’re thrown into battle, you’ll face an unknown number of opponents. This plays into how you’ll attack each of the enemies. Up to 3 enemies can be on the screen at once, but in the upper right corner is a number showing you how many back-up enemies will appear once you defeat the starting line-up. Not only do these mechanics play a part in the battles, but also which elements your creatures are. Each element has a strength and weekness; Fire beats Earth, Earth beats Wind, Wind beats Water, Water beats Fire. If you’re up against a bunch of Earth creatures, you’ll want to use your Fire creatures more often because even their regular attacks will be stronger that usual. 
As you battle creatures, you’ll also be able to capture them. This is done by purchasing Bronze, Silver and Gold cards in the town’s shop. Each type of card has their own capture percentage when up against creatures, depending on how strong they are. Once you capture a creature, it’s automatically added to your line-up. As you level your main character up, you’ll be able to hold more and more creatures. However, only the creatures that you use while in battle get the experience gained for each fight, so switching out your creatures is something that you should do regularly, or else you’ll just wind up with 3 decently powered creatures, and the rest of them will be very week, pretty much not helping out your team at all. 
If you don’t want to use a creature, once you get back into town, you can destroy that creature, and turn it into a soul stone, which you’re able to attach to another creature. This can be useful, especially if you’ve captured a very low-level creature, or just have duplicates. 
When you level up your character, you’re given a stat point which you can assign to either the defense, attack, magic, resistance, speed or max HP of your creatures. You’re also able to increase the license of your character by battling it out in arenas across the land. After doing this, you’ll be able to attach gems to your character. These gems are available in the shop, or can be won in battle and increase your creatures stats as well. Each license that you earn will add one more slot for a gem. You’re also able to collect totems by completing certain battles. These totems assign a specific creature to your character, able to use a special ability while in battle once each time you leave a town. 
In each town, there are quests you can accept, which reward you with gold and silver, as well as special creatures. Once the quests are explained they go into your quest log. In order to re-read them, all you need to do is tap on the quest again, and you’ll get a full explanation. These quests range from killing or capturing a certain number of creatures to evolving your creatures or taking out a certain creature breeder who’s been causing trouble for the town, and more. There’s a very nice variety within the quests, keeping the gameplay interesting. 
GameCenter is supported, with 3 leaderboards; Collection Percent, Hero Level and Infinite Dungeon, which scores how many levels you can make it through on the endless dungeon. There are also 24 achievements included, which will take some time to complete. Dragon Island Blue contains endless replayability, with the Infinite Dungeon, not to mention the countless hours you’ll be able to spend going through the actual story mode. There is a ton of content in the game, and is easily my favorite Pokemon type game in the AppStore. Right now, NNT is having a launch sale, pricing Dragon Island Blue at $0.99 for a limited time. Soon it’ll shoot up to $2.99. DIB is Unviersal, so no worries about playing in 2X mode on your iPad. If you’re a fan of Pokemon, Dragon Island Blue is a must own game. There’s plenty of depth as well as strategy, and once you get through all the beginning creatures, there are some pretty bad-ass ones you’ll want to try and collect over and over again until you can snag em, building up the best team of creatures that you can. 

Acheron Prime [InsurgentX Entertainment] – $5.99

Sci-fi adventure/aerial combat titles are a bit of a rarity in the AppStore. Galaxy on Fire, Dangerous, No Gravity, Warpgate and Star Battalion are basically it when it comes to the genre. Luckily, fans of the genre can rejoice once more, as InsurgentX Entertainment has added a new game into the mix; Acheron Prime, a sci-fi aerial combat RPG adventure title set in a dystopian future of Earth. Now, with the overall polish and larger studio that Fishlabs has (55 employees), it’s pretty clear that a game matching or out-shining Galaxy On Fire won’t happen any time soon, and I accepted that fact quite some time ago. So the real question is; Does Acheron Prime stand up as an aerial combat/sci-fi adventure title worthy of sinking hours and hours into? Well, hopefully you’ll be able to decide after reading this review. 
Acheron Prime starts off in a rather beautiful and seemingly peaceful section of space in the year 2500. Of course, that silence ends very quickly, and you find yourself under attack. Here is where you’re introduced to Kirika, your main character, and LISA (Logistics Interface Strategic Analyzer), the AI construct within her brain, and a short gameplay tutorial. You’re given a joystick for movement, 3 buttons for ship control, and an accelerate/decelerate button. In the middle of the screen you’ll find your shield, hull health and speed + energy meters. You’re also able to rotate your ship by dragging your finger across the center of the screen. 
After destroying the smaller fighters, a Mothership arrives, and you hyperdrive your way outta there. After a cut-scene, you’re taken to a major docking ship. Here, you get a little plot information, and learn the basics for maneuvering around within these areas. Seems you’re an Imperial Officer, yet the Mothership that came after you had Imperial Insignia on it. Looks like you’ve got a lot to figure out. But that’ll come later. You’re taken to the hanger to purchase a ship, and outfit it with a gun and radar. After unsuccessfully trying to get further away from the area, you start the main gaming session. Doing seemingly random small tasks to help get you where you need to go, find who you need to find, and learn what you need to learn. 
 The game is set up a lot like Galaxy on Fire, following the same basic outline. However, as you progress throughout the game, you’ll find out that Acheron Prime is more focused on the RPG elements and combat sessions rather than mining and trading. Traveling does seem to take a little longer, but there is a Fast Forward button that appears on screen for these sections, which really does help it not drag on. Another anti-GoF aspect is the world of Acheron Prime. Instead of spanning across an entire galaxy, Acheron Prime is limited to the Solar-System. This does help in regard to remembering areas, and knowing whereabouts you’ll be going when heading on missions. 

Graphically, Acheron Prime doesn’t have all the flash and glamour that GoF contains, but it’s still very well designed. The space environments are beautiful, the ship designs are very well thought out, and every other object is wonderfully crafted. Animations are also very well done, with the explosions looking especially nice. Combined with some very energetic music, but not digging all the way into the techno genre, the effects and BGM do help add to the immersion of the game. The voice acting, like most iOS specific games, is a little cheesy, but I found it to be on the same level, if not better, than Galaxy on Fire’s voice acting, which is pretty impressive. 
Also fairly impressive is the amount of content in the game. Apparently, the campaign is a full 40-50 OR MORE hours long. Combined with the outstanding gameplay, and really nice equip system, Acheron Prime really feels like a full blown major console game that’s been ported over to the iOS. If the voice acting was a little better, it could easily pass as a PS2 or XBOX title. The difficulty level is also something that separates it from other titles within the genre, as it will definitely give gamers a challenge. 
Again, there won’t ever be another Galaxy on Fire, but it’s incredibly surprising that a 4 man team made a real contender for one of the best sci-fi adventure/aerial combat titles on the iOS. Being Universal and priced at $5.99, fans of the genre will not regret picking this up. Hopefully we’ll be able to see some add-ons like GoF, as I have the feeling I’m definitely going to want more after I complete the game. GameCenter is also supported, with 10 achievements that add some exploration aspects to the game. I did encounter one little issue; when I received a notification on my iPad 2 while playing, the sound cut out, and would not come back. Even after another loading screen. To get the sound and music back, I had to exit the game, and clear it from my multitasking bar, then restart it. Aside from that, I haven’t come across any issues. InsurgentX has definitely provided iOS gamers with a solid, console quality Space Adventure. It’s one that should not be missed, especially if you felt Galaxy on Fire lacked some RPG elements and needed more combat. 

Wizorb [Tribute Games] – $2.99

Ports are always a pretty big deal in the iOS gaming world. The most recent port to hit the AppStore, Wizorb, is a mix between an old-school block-breaker and an RPG. Sound good? We thought so too. And so did thousands of PC/MAC gamers when the game was released on Steam and the Mac AppStore back in March. Since then, Tribute Games, a very small, 2 person studio, with roughly 10 years of development experience (working with Ubisoft, Eidos and Gameloft), has been figuring out the best way to port Wizorb over to the iOS. Well, last Thursday, it finally hit the AppStore, and the first ever brick-breaking RPG was made available for mobile devices around the world. 
Wizorb starts off similar to other RPGs; After an introduction level, you’re taken to Tarot, a small town in the Kingdom of Gorudo, where you find out that a curse cast by demons has whipped out most of the town, and that monsters came from Gorudo castle, attacking the townspeople. Seems Cyrus, your badass wizard, is the only hope for Gorudo’s salvation. And here’s where you might start to get disappointed. The control scheme is horrid.
Starting off in the intro level, you’re able to see two buttons, labeled A and B in the lower right corner. During the block breaking segments, these are used to launch your ball, and to cast spells. To move your paddle left and right, you can drag anywhere on the screen. This isn’t so bad, especially on the smaller iPhone/iPod screen, but you might have some issues on the larger iPad screen, needing to constantly pick your finger up and re-drag it in order to move the paddle all the way across the screen, and the A and B buttons are fairly small, and have a pretty large dead zone, so you’ll constantly be missing the buttons. During the town sequences, movement is done by touching in the direction you want to go. So to move upwards, you’ll need to touch above your wizard, left, on the left side of the screen, ect. Again, this isn’t too much of a problem on the smaller iPhone screen, but on the iPad, it’s a real pain, and you’ll wind up blocking a lot of the gameplay area. The collision detection in the towns areas doesn’t help movement much, as you’ll need to be completely clear of an object in order to get around it. This generally just makes things a little more frustrating. 
Once you get out of the first town, you’ll be taken to the world map, where you can move on to the next town, and start the real brick-breaking gameplay. Here, as you destroy bricks, mana bottles, gems, extra lives, keys and coins will occasionally fall, depending on what color the bricks that you’re destroying are. Also thrown into the mix are evil monsters which you’ll need to destroy in order to complete the levels. Like most brick-breakers, if you can manage to get your ball stuck up above the bricks, you’ll be in for a smooth and easy ride, just needing to collect the items that fall down towards you. Also, learning how to control the ball is a very valuable asset. Hitting the ball in the center of your paddle will send it straight up, while hitting it on the edge will send it flying in that direction (left edge = ball goes to the left), and everywhere in-between sends it at a different angle. Getting this perfected will make the game a lot easier, while at the same time, provide another level of challenge to the gameplay. 
Unfortunately, I have experienced quite a few drops in framerate, and some lag, especially in levels that are packed with bricks. In a game that’s dependant on quick movement and reflexes, this can be a real downer. Another issue I’ve experienced is having buttons get ‘stuck’. Occationally, if I hit the A, or launch ball, button before the wizard completely changes into the paddle, the game will read the A button as being held down, and I won’t be able to launch the ball. The only way to fix this is to quit and restart. 
Another complaint that others have had is that the game only takes up ¾ of the screen. The developers have said that this is because re-sizing the game to fit the iDevice’s screen caused the gameplay area to distort, and that they would have had to re-do all of the game’s artwork in order to have it display correctly. This has left a giant black bar on the bottom of the screen. Something to fill in this black bar would have been great. For instance, Cave’s games also do not necessarily fit the iDevice’s screen, so instead of having a large black bar around the gameplay area, they’ve included some nice artwork along the outside. 
Now, even with all these issues, if you’re a huge fan of the original PC title, it’s nice to have the game available at any time and fit in your pocket. The town segments do not take a lot of time to get through, and the real meat of the game is, in fact, the brick-breaking gameplay. Again, a lot of the issues with the controls are not as prevalent on the smaller iPhone/iPod Touch screens, but on the iPad, can be very frustrating. Priced at $2.99, which is also the same price on Steam, you might want to check out the PC version that doesn’t have all of the touch-screen’s issues. But if you’re a huge fan of the brick-breaking genre, Wizorb has the potential to be another great title. However, you might want to hold off until a couple of updates have gone through, fixing the control issues and gameplay lag as well as the drops in framerate. Right now, it seems like the developers over at Tribute Games tried to spend as little as they could, and worked as fast as they could to port the game over to the iOS. Luckily, updates are a huge deal in the iOS gaming world, and all of this can be fixed and dealt with; if the developers care enough to put the time and effort into it.

Master of Dungeon [Playbean] – $3.99

Ever since the release of CrimsonHeart, RPG fans have been looking for the next title to live up to the very high standards set by ANBSoft’s amazing title. Now, I won’t lie. Not one Action RPG title has made me come close to thinking of CrimsonHeart since. Until now. Playbean’s Master of Dungeon. What first brought on the memories of CrimsonHeart? The 360 degree movement. Yup, that’s really all it took. Once you play an Action RPG with 360 degree movement, all others seem stiff, and Playbean has nailed the movement, controls, and camera angles perfectly. The only question remaining; Does the rest of the game live up to the criteria of Crimsonheart? 
Master of Dungeon is a story about a place called World Tree. Light and Food is scarce, but the people of the land follow and believe in the Prophet, willing to do anything to please her. The English translation is pretty bad, and this isn’t helped by the text being broken up across lines (what a kawinkidink, just like CrimsonHeart!), but it’s understandable, and I never found myself at a loss for words not knowing what was going on in the story. Once you start you’re able to pick your class; Warrior, who has a strong physical attack with fencing skills and sword spheres, Assassin, who specializes in fist combat and is great when luck skills are increased, helping him find gold and rare item drops easier than the other classes, and the Wizard, who specializes in magic attacks and skills, and is better used at medium range instead of up close and personal.
Each different class has a different skill tree, and these skill trees are pretty extensive, offering up numerous skills to use and expand on, helping you immensely throughout the game. The skills you wind up choosing will play a major roll, effecting combat, and guiding how you control your characters from the beginning of the game. Unfortunately, the combat is not equal to CrimsonHearts. Running into a swarm of enemies and hacking and slashing your way through them will not severely drain your HP, or effectively kill you. Instead, mob management plays a roll, guiding enemies into large groups so that you can easily take them all out at once. This does, however, bring down the amount of grinding needed in order to level up, and because you’ll be leveling up fairly often, you will be spending quite a bit of time managing your skill tree. 
Master of Dungeon is set up so that you’ll constantly be visiting your tiny town in-between missions, talking to the townsfolk, progressing in the story, and starting new quests. Once you have your quests, there’s one exit out of the town, and it’s straight into a dungeon. When you start, you’re only able to go into one area of the dungeon, but as you progress, more areas will be opened, and you’ll be able to transport your character to these places directly, making it easier to navigate through the seemingly endless corridors of the world. Unfortunately, there’s not much in the way of environmental changes, which does have a pretty big impact on the game. Visiting essentially the same areas over and over again filled with different enemies does get a little boring after a while. 
The graphics and animations are reminiscent of CrimsonHeart, though not as extravagant, the attacking animations do contain a lot of flare, and utilizing the strengths of each class, they really do make you feel like a badass. The movement, death, and re-appearing animations are also well done, also having animations for various impacts like confusion, poison, and more, making the gameplay pretty flashy. Along with the great music and sound effects, it does create a fairly immersive gameplay experience. 
Priced at $3.99, and being Universal, it’s not a bad game by any means, and fans of the genre will love the 360 degree movement. It is better than CrimsonHeart? No. Not really. Is it better than most of the other Action RPGs out there? Yes. Yes it is. The 360 degree movement makes a huge difference in the gameplay, and even though it’s not equal to CrimsonHeart, I don’t think players want another game that’s exactly like CH, and I’m pretty sure Playbean knows this. There’s enough similarities to keep fans of CrimsonHeart satisfied, entertained, and hooked on the game, while also having enough differences to not be just a copy. Playbean has done a fantastic job here, and with a couple tweaks, it could rank right up there with CrimsonHeart as one of the best Action RPGs available in the AppStore. 


What makes a good RPG / Dungeon Crawler? If you were to ask someone like myself, who almost never plays them, it would be one that appeals to the masses in its gameplay encompassing something for everyone, not being to in depth to understand what the heck is going on, and having an even level progression and gripping storyline.

Orc: Vengeance, Chillingo’s latest fledgling entry to these adventures, is something that caught my eye from its initial release, and even being somewhat adverse to the genre, I thought I would give it a go. Mind you, the last time I dug into a similar title was Aralon: Sword and Shadow. I am certainly glad that I hit that Buy and Install button!

The story of Orc is actually a worthy one, even with other reviews saying that it may fall into the cliche category, with you taking on the guise of an Orc Warchief, Rok, who’s homeland clan, Argon, is threatened by the ever flourishing ‘Dark One’. Your objective is to take on said damnable force and breach their stronghold head on, and put an end to this evil that was actually brought on by the now mortified humans. There are a variety of cutscenes that tell the story, but the more interesting way the chronicle is told is via strewn about books that you find similar to loot.
The graphics are gorgeous. The animations are top notch, and the backgrounds are all exquisitely detailed. The framerate never suffers, and I can definitely say this is one of the prettier games I have had the pleasure of playing while maintaining such a great framerate.

The loot system is downright perfect, with the enthusiast never feeling the urge to even glance at the all to existent and optional IAP system. Each enemy you destroy drops some coins, and there are also treasure chests impeccably placed around each level. Another way to earn loot is to pick up dropped weapons from your defeated enemies, and sell them to the vendor whom you are prompted to visit upon each level completion. You can also hit the main menu at anytime, go to the vendor, and select the level you were on and you’ll be returned to the last checkpoint.
The weapons and shields have the typical attributes such as speed, opposing weapon upgrade capabilities, and defense powers. The weapons are all fun and unique, and I personally thought that having the biggest, baddest weapon was the best and didn’t care that it was the slowest. Their are limited inventory slots to use, which may be a put off to some, but I found the ones available to be plenty.

The leveling system is standard fare as well; attack, defense, greed (ie. coin % earned), and vengeance. Vengeance is a key component to your combat as it is limited in supply, although is replenished over time, and is what is drained when doing your advanced combat ‘Skill’ moves. These skills are found in chests, so it is key to explore, something I found pleasure in and I think adds to the game. You can upgrade all of the skills, everything from the blizzard slam attack to the replenish health points, and this is based on your character’s current level.

The combat is awesome. The interface is made up of a tap to move system, and the combat/skills are similar in using swipes and other gestures. You are allowed up to four(4) inventory gestures; I used two combat skills, and two for health/vengeance upgrades. Some may question the use of the touch to move interface as opposed to a joypad, but I can confirm that it works fine.
Combat scenes are extraordinary. Everything stops for a second, sort of a cutscene, and you will feel your adrenaline surge until Rok bangs on his shield as if to say ‘Bring it!’
The adversaries will certainly gang up and smother you if you don’t keep moving, which really add to the urgency of the combat scenes. The adventure has a great sense of pacing in that you will have an insanely intense battle scene, a perfectly placed checkpoint, and then you will be allowed to explore for a while to loot and upgrade etc. I found great pleasure in not having to battle back to back, well, not until the final few chapters anyway, but that’s to be expected when you’re getting close to your villain.

If there is one fault of Orc, is that the foray went by all too quickly with the entire game taking me roughly 4-5 hours. I certainly think that the money spent was entirely worth it however. Those looking for an all around dungeon crawler with amazing retina visuals, fast paced combat, and great albeit not too in depth character and weapon leveling up systems will find a great time with Orc and I highly recomend it to those new to the genre, as well as to the seasoned Hack n Slash veterans.

Blade of Darkness [Zealm] – $1.99

With the recent release of Pocket Heroes re-igniting my love for D&D parties, and bringing back memories of playing Diablo back in the late 90’s, I’ve been on a sort of quest of my own. To find all the Diabloesque and Fantasy Card games for the iOS that I can. Low and behold, one of the first titles I came across, and just can’t get enough of; Blade of Darkness – an open-world 3D RPG/hack-n-slash game developed by Zealm (developers of Monster Fight, Zombies Runner and Angry Zombie Ninja Vs. Vegetables). 
Blade of Darkness starts out with a pretty impressive cutscene giving you a bit of backstory; seems darkness overtook the land after a meteor shower rained down from the skies. Zombies and other undead creatures started to appear everywhere, and the darkness slowly spread. This land is appropriately named ‘Shadowland’. On the edge of Shadowland lies ‘Sanctuary‘; a campsite set up where a small patch of sunlight hit’s the ground. It’s here that you’ll begin your journey. 
Actually, I guess I should say ‘it’s here where you’ll figure out what you’re supposed to be doing throughout the rest of the game.’ The tutorial is made up of 3 pop-ups. One telling you that the joystick in the lower left corner is for movement, another saying that the icon to the right is for jumping, and that to talk to people, you walk up to them and tap on them. Trust me, you won’t forget. Every time you come back to Sanctuary, you’ll need to go through the ‘tutorial’ before you get started again. From here on out, you’re on your own.
After figuring out that people in town with a “!” above their heads have a quest to send you on, you can try and figure out how to get out of Sanctuary. Turns out there’s a pathway right behind where you start from that leads out to two different warp areas, and from here, now you can start your journey. Your first task requires that you go to the East to find the wife of a wizard at camp. It seems they were separated, and he needs you to find her. Unfortunately, leaving the campsite will only take you South, through cemeteries, dungeons, and other dark lands which are full of undead creatures. Directions aren’t really accurate, and there will be quite a bit of exploring involved. 
The battle system is in real time, and is kind of reminiscent of CrimsonHeart. If you just run into a pack of enemies slinging your sword around, you’ll find yourself in trouble fairly quickly. Standing back and luring a couple of enemies towards you, and watching how they attack and block will be a valuable asset to learn early on in the game. Running around to the back of enemies helps you avoid their shields, and can give you some massive hits. Of course, not all of the enemies require this tactic. There are some that will just stand there while you walk right up to them and bash their heads in. It’s all part of the combat system dance. I guess. Once you start killing enemies, they’ll start dropping gold and other items, and you can get your loot on. Figuring out how to pick items up is another task that you’ll need to figure out on your own. I’ll help you out; Tapping on the item inside the window that pops up will put it in your equipment pack.
Don’t get me wrong. Once you figure everything in Blade of Darkness out, it’s really a fun game. But sticking with it through all of the figuring it out will be taxing, and currently priced at $0.99, there are going to be some people who just give up, and delete the game. But if you’re willing to stick it out, and not afraid to learn basically the whole UI on your own, the hack-n-slash, loot driven, Diablo reminiscent gameplay can be very rewarding. Finding those rare items, and beating the hell out of hundreds of enemies is great fun. You’re also able to play in CO-OP mode, which has the game controlling another hero along side you, Multiplayer Mode, where you can host or join another game, as well as an Arena Mode where you can battle other players online. Lets just hope that Zealm sells enough copies to be driven to keep the updates coming, because if they do, Blade of Darkness could turn into one hell of a Diabloesque title, and maybe even one of the top loot driven games on the iOS. 

Pocket Heroes [F5 + Ayopa] – $0.99

Online Multiplayer fans should be in heaven right now, especially when it comes to Asynchronous play. Last week, the releases of Outwitters and Summoner Wars (and Left2Die for the non-async MP gameplay), and now this week, with the release of Ayopa and F5’s Pocket Heroes, an RPG title with Roguelike influenced gameplay has hit the virtual shelves, and servers are loaded!
Starting it up, I was pretty surprised to see that Pocket Heroes has no single player campaign. Not that I was expecting it, but I’ve never had the privilege of playing an Asynchronous MP only RPG title, but with the versatility of the iDevice, it’s no surprise that we’re seeing more and more of these MP-async titles popping up. 
You’re able to start a game with up to 3 other players through either your GameCenter friend’s list, or through e-mail. With 4 different classes to choose from, you’re able to put together quite a team. Once you actually start the game, your first quest is a fairly simple one, and acts more like a tutorial phase. You’ll learn how to target enemies, how to move, where you can move to, and how the upgrade system works.

 Upgrading is done automatically, your stats increase with each level you gain, but you’re able to work your way down through the skill tree, getting a skill point which you can spend on an extra ability every other level upgrade. As you take out enemies, they’ll drop loot; coins and items. You are able to pick up items which you can’t equip, and drop them around your friends, so item hunting usually benefits all players involved. After each quest, of which there are 10 in each game, you’ll meet at a tavern. Here, you’re able to purchase items from the shop with the coins you’ve collected, and get ready for your next quest. 
If you aren’t lucky enough to have any friends who own the game, and can’t strategize before-hand, there is a chat area at the top of the screen which lets you co-ordinate attacks, and let the other players know what you’re doing, or what you hope they’ll do. This is also really nice for letting other gamers know if you’ll be gone for a while, or when you’ll be back. It’s really a nice little addition. Right now, as with most MP games that hit the stores, there are quite a few issues and bugs that couldn’t have been found during the beta testing. Some issues that I’ve run into; When I first started the app, I registered my name as ‘Syntheticvoid’ and couldn’t connect to the server. Thankfully, the developers at F5 were kind enough to help me out, look through their server log, and see that I had a capital letter in my name. Turns out I needed to register with ‘syntheticvoid’ in order to connect to the servers. Right now, there’s no random match-making, which could be a real deal-breaker for quite a few gamers. Denying and deleting games is not an option, so you have the potential to wind up with loads of unfinished, or un-joined games in your game log. There’s also no randomized quests. Even though the level generation is randomized, the 10 quests that you’ll go on in each game will always be the same. 
With F5 being great right now at working with players and trying to make Pocket Heroes the best Async-MP RPG title it can be, and Ayopa being the publisher, with every single game under their belt having been updated quickly, and consistently, I have complete faith that Pocket Heroes will reach it’s true potential soon enough. Priced at $0.99, it’s easy to take the plunge, and experience gameplay that’s reminiscent of a Dungeon’s & Dragons session with friends. But if you’re hoping this is a full-fledged Action or Turn-Based RPG with hundreds of quests to do online, you’ll be pretty upset with the game. There are plenty of other titles that let you join in a world that’s pre-constructed and always alive. But if you’re looking for a close game with friends, Pocket Heroes is just the game you’re looking for, and it can only get better over time.

Brandnew Boy [Oozoo Inc] – $3.99

Action RPGs have quite a fan following in the AppStore. I’ll admit that since Hybrid and Zenonia, I’ve been hooked on them. But there comes a time when the same thing over and over again becomes dull, and with the crazy amount of Action RPGs available for the iOS, it’s no surprise that seemingly everything that can be done with them has been done, and, aside from an interesting story, the genre is in kind of a slump for the time being. Fortunately, there is light at the end of the tunnel. South Korea’s own Oozoo Inc., a new studio on the iOS gaming scene, has given gamers a very interesting new Action RPG title, Brandnew Boy, developed with one of the best engines available, Unreal. 
Brandnew Boy is the story of Rookie, a young boy who’s lost his memory, but happens to have a little TV robot to help him out. As you’ll quickly find out, to figure out who you are, where you are, and what has happened in your past, you’ll need to fight. Various enemies are attacking you for no reason, but you appear to have what it takes to survive, and find yourself.
Brandnew Boy is a 3D game with 3rd person view, something that’s rarely done with iOS RPG titles. What makes Brandnew Boy really stand out is the combat system. To attack an enemy, you just need to tap on them, and then tap in time with the attack animations. There’s also a gauge at the bottom of the screen which lets you know when the optimum time to tap is. This isn’t required, but tapping right when you hit an enemy results in a lot more damage. Once the enemies are about to attack you, an exclamation point appears above their head. To avoid their attack, you can swipe on the screen in any direction, and Rookie will dive out of the way. The movement controls are simple as well, tap to move, and swipe on the screen to change the direction of Rookie. To stop moving, simply tap on the screen again. These controls allow for a clean UI, and work great.
There are two game modes to choose from, Scenario Mode, which is the basic campaign/story mode, and Infinity Mode, which lets you battle it out with various enemies, trying to get the best score you can before you die. As you can imagine, the graphics are top notch. Oozoo Inc has done a fantastic job creating a wonderful world with vibrant colors, loads of detail, amazing animations, and great character designs. The music and effects also help to create an incredibly immersive gameplay experience. 
As you level up, and your stats increase, you’re also able to unlock and purchase more items from the shop. Here, you can buy various gloves, shirts, accessories, skills, rings, potions, and more. There are IAPs available, but you can earn quite a few coins just by going through the stages, and playing in the Infinity Mode. You’re also able to replay levels, which is great, because if you get stuck on a stage that’s too difficult, you’re able to go back and earn more coins, and maybe level up some more, increasing your stats. 
Brandnew Boy is above and beyond, one of the best Action RPG/3D Action-Combat titles available for the iOS. The great graphics, and superb gameplay offer up a fantastic gaming experience. For $3.99, it’s a great buy for anyone remotely interested in Action RPGs, and a must buy for fans of the genre who have gotten tired of the same old recipe developers have been using. Including 99 achievements 6 leaderboards in GameCenter, coupled with the Infinite Mode, there’s endless replayability. Right now, Brandnew Boy is on sale for $0.99, so it’s an even better time to snag this great game. With more updates in the works, I can’t wait to see what Oozoo has in store for us in the future. 

Squids Wild West [The Game Bakers] – $0.99

For those of you into RPG titles, last years release of Squids, developed by The Game Bakers, was a great one. It was a casual action RPG title that definitely stuck with people, and managed to stand out in a genre full of clones, copies, and repetitive release after repetitive release. Since then, fans of the game have been waiting for the epic continuation of the story, and now it’s finally here with the release of Squids Wild West. Steev and his friends are on a quest to find Winnick, and save the underwater world from the evil Black Ooze taking over. And it’s just as memorable an experience as the first.
Squids Wild West is just what you’d expect in a sequel. The same great characters, graphics, mechanics, and type of story, merged with new characters, new mechanics, new hazards, and new enemies, and like all fantastic sequels before it, you don’t need to play the previous title to fully enjoy the second. Controls are just like they were in the original Squids, you move your characters by slingshotting them around the level, knocking them into enemies, and getting them in position to use their special powers. 
Each squid is one of 4 different types of character; Shooter, which is able to shoot pearls at the enemy, Trooper, who can produce a large shockwave, knocking all enemies around it back and into anything behind them, Scout, who can dash without costing it any movement points, and Healer, which heals characters just by bumping into them. 

As you progress throughout the game, you’re able to collect many new hats, all of which, you’re able to transfer their powers/stats to the squids who can equip them. This is a huge plus, as it gives you more of a drive to collect and purchase all of the hats you can, because doing so makes each of your characters that much stronger. Hats are unlockable after certain levels, and can also be found in chests throughout the game. It’s a good idea to try and explore each of the levels thoroughly to make sure that each and every item is found. 
Exploring is also required if you want to try and grab the 3 stars that are available for each level. One for finding the secret star, which is hidden somewhere in the level, one for getting all of your characters through the level without dying, and the last for making it through the level in a certain number of turns. This also adds some replay value to the game, but if you’re willing to play through each level twice, you should be able to snag each of the stars, as well as earn some extra pearls which you can use to upgrade your characters and buy hats in the shop. There are IAPs in the game, but it is in no way pushed towards buying them. You’re able to earn more than enough of the game’s currency, which is pearls, just by playing through each of the games levels once. 
With new mechanics, like warping whirlpools, stables and creatures which you’re able to ride, 12 characters to choose from and make up your team, tons of new levels, new areas, new enemies, and tons of stuff that made the first Squids such a fantastic game to experience, Squids Wild West, being Universal, and priced at $0.99 is a MUST BUY for anyone with an iDevice. It’s a great adventure for hardcore RPG players, as well as casual iOS gamers, and provides hours and hours of great entertainment. Squids Wild West is definitely going to wind up on my top 10 games of the year list. 

Fall of Angels [Kevin Mitchell] – $2.99

It’s not too often you can come across an RPG title which is unique and has an interesting story. Winner of’s ‘Most Addictive’ Game Award for 2012, Fall of Angels, developed by Kevin Mitchell (who previously worked for Eurocom Entertainment Software and IBM) and Lee Pattison, is one of the few RPGs available in the AppStore which falls away from the typical cutesy plots and cartoonish graphics resulting in a terrific turn based/real time RPG with a memorable story, unique graphics, and great gameplay. 
Starting off, you’re shown a cut-scene with some sort of object appearing out of nowhere and  shooting through the sky, crash landing somewhere off in the distance. Next, there’s a dialogue sequence between a soldier and commander who’s forces are trying to break through the borders of the land where they believe the object has landed. You come in during the battle as Sariel, a member of CEL, an elite worldwide force working for the religious powers within the world of Fall of Angels. 
The controls are presented nicely, and easy to use; A floating joystick, run button in the lower right corner, and the menu button in the top right. Battle controls are clean and also very simple to use; Tap on the character you want to use, tap on the action, Attack, Skills, Action or Items, and then tap on the enemy you want to take action against. If you would like to use your typical attack, you can just tap on your character 3 consecutive times, and he’ll automatically attack the enemy. 
The fighting is Turn-Based, but only to an extent. Your character’s can only attack after a cool-down, but there is no break in the battle. If you don’t attack right away, you could wind up being hit numerous times before you get a hit in. This makes the battles more action oriented, and pretty unique. Each of the battles you enter is basically voluntary. You’re able to see each of the enemies and animals on the map, so there are no hidden/random battles. 

Graphically, Fall of Angels looks like an old-school PC title; 2D sprites set against 3D environments. This does make for some hard to find pathways that are hidden behind trees or walls, but I’ve never wound up feeling lost or stuck. The environments are nicely detailed, and easy to tell apart. Animations are decent enough, though the running animation looks pretty weird, and some of the stances that the characters take look awkward. But it consistently gives you the feeling of an old-school RPG, which I absolutely love. 
As you make your way through the game, you’ll be able to collect tools which you can equip and use to complete puzzles, and side-tasks, as well as collect various objects. The interactive puzzles are a nice addition to the game, and even though they take you out of the core gameplay, they don’t distract from the immersion. 

Priced at $2.99, but on sale at the moment for $1.99, and available for the iPhone/iPod, you’ll need to play in 2X mode if you’re on your iPad, which is kind of a bummer. The environments don’t wind up being pixilated, but the character sprites do. Hopefully an HD or Universal version will be released in the future. The developers have said that Fall of Angels is only the beginning of a wider story arc that’s already been written, which is great to hear. The AppStore could definitely use more RPG titles like this. If you’re a sucker for old-school RPG games, Fall of Angels has one of the most interesting stories you’ll find in an iOS title, and interesting combat+puzzle mechanics. It’s one you should definitely check out.