• arrow
    LOG IN 
    • Log in using an option below.
      Forgot password?
      Login with Facebook
      Sign in with Twitter

Shop Contact Us Submit Videos Who Are We? Hall Of Fame Advertising With PG Games Archive
Best games on iPhone Best games on iPad Best games on Apple Watch Best games on Android
Best free games on iPhone Best free games on iPad Best free games on Apple Watch Best free games on Android Competitions
iPhone game sales iPad game sales Apple Watch game sales Android game sales
Latest iPhone game updates Latest iPad game updates Latest Apple Watch game updates Latest Android game updates
New iPhone games New iPad games New Apple Watch games New Android games
PG.biz PG FRANCE PG GERMANY PG Game Guides PG GameHubs PG Connects
AppSpy 148 Apps Android Rundown iPhone Quality Index iPad Quality Index Android Quality Index Swipe Magazine Best App Ever Awards
Pocket Gamer on NewsNow
UK Mobile Pages Directory
Skinflint Price Comparison
DS  header logo

Iron Man

For: DS   Also on: Mobile, PSP

It's a little rusty

Product: Iron Man | Developer: Sega Studios | Publisher: Sega | Format: DS | Genre: Film/ TV tie- in, Shooter | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Iron Man DS, thumbnail 1
If you happen to have caught our review for the PSP iteration of Iron Man then you'll be aware that we didn't come away feeling particularly enamoured. Therefore, you might logically assume that the DS version, which is running on more technically modest hardware, would be an even less appealing affair.

Amazingly, you'd be wrong.

Despite looking decidedly rough around the edges the Nintendo version is undoubtedly the better pick of the portable adaptations, mainly because it has been tailored to suit the limited and eccentricities of the host hardware. As we pointed out in our PSP review, that particular edition felt very much like a watered-down facsimile of the already disappointing home console game, but the DS instalment proves to be a much more entertaining proposition all round, albeit only marginally so.

Like all good millionaire weapon dealers, Tony Stark likes splashing his cash on nice things. Cars, houses, death-dealing robotic suits, that kind of thing. However, after a brush with some nasty terrorist types whilst enjoying a business trip to Afghanistan (which is lovely any time of year, we're told), Stark decides that he wants out of the arms trade and puts his immense wealth to good use by travelling around the globe destroying the very weapons he helped to create. We live in a wasteful world.

Unlike the lamentable PSP version, Iron Man on DS simplifies the gameplay a little. All the action takes place on one horizontal plane, so there's not need to worry about regulating Stark's hovering height. Instead, you simply zoom around using the D-pad and fire via the touchscreen; it's a set-up that apes the control schemes witnessed in retro classics like Robotron and Smash TV, for those that remember them. If you don't, don't worry. All you need to know is that, for the most part, it's a perfectly acceptable control system that takes into account the unique features of the DS.

However, things become a little more awkward when you call additional weapons into play. Pressing any of the fascia buttons activates your EMP attack, which renders enemies defenceless for a short period. Needless to say, when you're using the stylus to control your fire, having to press a button with the same hand is awkward.

Admittedly, performing your 'Unibeam' attack is less troublesome as it merely requires you to touch the lower-left hand corner of the touchscreen, but it's still far from intuitive and is often difficult to aim effectively.

To round things off, Stark's afterburner jets are assigned to the L and R triggers. Taking this control set-up into account it's easy to understand why most players will suffer from serious hand-cramp after only a few minutes' play, but all things considered the system is still far more robust and dependable than the one seen in the PSP version.

The general gameplay involves seeking out specific targets laid out over some impressively sized locations. You're given various objectives, such as taking out communication towers or destroying power generators, and although there are plenty of enemy units thrown into the mix to make your task a little more demanding, the focus of the game never really shifts a great deal. Destroy this target, then this one, then that one, and repeat.

However, it's unlikely that you'll have chance to become terribly bored with it all because the eight levels offered up in Iron Man should only take you a few hours to blast through. In terms of challenge it's the video game equivalent of falling off a log, which is a shame because generally the play mechanic, repetitiveness aside, remains fairly entertaining while it lasts.

Once you've seen all the main game has to offer you can dabble in the DS exclusive One Man Army mode, which throws wave after wave of assailants at you in a test of skill and endurance. Playing very much like a score-attack mini-game, the only real incentive to persevere with it is to brag to friends about your performance. However, finding someone above the age of 11 who owns this game might prove difficult.

Although Iron Man is a more pleasurable experience that its PSP counterpart, it's far from being one of the more solid film adaptations we've seen. The game dynamic is fun for a while but it's one older gamers will inevitably find repetitive and dull. True, the overall standard of challenge is so low that you won't be playing long anyway but that only conjures up the feeling of being short-changed. The younger crowd should certainly get more out of it but, generally, this remains a missed opportunity.
Iron Man
Reviewer photo
Damien McFerran | 15 May 2008
The DS version trumps the PSP edition, but it's a hollow victory - this is lightweight stuff that many players will find is only entertaining for a worryingly short a period of time
Have Your Say