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Deus Ex: The Fall

For: iPad   Also on: Android, iPhone

It was all yellow

Product: Deus Ex: The Fall | Developer: Eidos-Montreal | Developer: N-Fusion Interactive | Publisher: Square Enix | Format: iPad | Genre: RPG, Shooter | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Deus Ex: The Fall iPad, thumbnail 1
Deus Ex: The Fall builds its world with colour. That orange hue that's so familiar from Deus Ex: Human Revolution is out in full force here, layered into a world that's far more restrictive than the one you'll find in its console forebear.

It's in the grimy streets of Panama City, in the augmented eyes of protagonist Ben Saxon, and in almost every other corner of the game as well. It makes for a familiar experience, those off-gold lights lulling you back into the gritty cyberpunk world Eidos-Montréal built for the console original.

And that familiarity extends to the skulking gameplay, the tension of watching guard movements and waiting for your second to strike. But there's a flimsiness here too, and a frustration, which keeps The Fall from reaching the heights of its console brethren.

Cyber crimes

Ben Saxon is a man on a mission, although it's not entirely clear what that mission is. There's a lot of exposition at the start of Deus Ex: The Fall and a lot of jargon and references that will go over a lot of heads.

Luckily, that story isn't particularly important once the game begins. You're given a pistol or a stun gun and let loose in a Panama City rife with corruption, drug addicts, and corporations. Waypoints mark the various quests you accept as you try to get out of the megalopolis alive.

The controls are slick but not perfect - this is, after all, an FPS on a touchscreen device. You can double-tap to move around the streets and corridors, but more often than not you're going to be using the floating joystick to move around. There's one for looking around as well.

Various buttons around the sides of the screen let you fire or swap your main weapon, chuck grenades and mines, unleash your augmented abilities, and duck and leap into cover. It's not the most intuitive system, but once you get the hang of them the controls work reasonably well.


The game is split into various quests, most of which involve making your way through a series of rooms full of goons, robots, and sensors that want to kill you. There's a lack of variety, but excellent level design tends to mask that pretty well.

Your mistakes are punished swiftly. Get caught sneaking and you're likely to die within a few seconds - especially in the later sections of the game, where the enemies get much, much tougher.

IAPs explained
The main currency in the game is called Credits. You use these to buy new guns, bundles of weapons and boosts, and to bribe people.

You can buy them with real-life money if your coffers are low. Packs range from 69p / 99c for 3,000 to £8.99 / $12.99 for 50,000.

You can also buy a credit boost for £1.49 / $1.99 and an XP boost for the same price.
And the shooting falls down a little. The precision you need isn't quite there, and sometimes you'll need to shoot an enemy three or four times in the face before he goes down. It feels clumsy, and reminds you that you're playing an iOS game rather than a console one.

When things work, though, and you silently take down an entire group of enemy combatants without being noticed, the thrill that runs through your fingers is something rather special indeed.

A particular highlight for me was popping out of cover to kill a guard with an un-silenced gun and using the noise to draw in the rest of his patrol, including a mini robotic tank, who all stumbled blindly into a series of perfectly placed proximity mines.

Well put together

Deus Ex: The Fall is a solid, hugely entertaining game that sits amongst the very best FPSs you can play on your iPad or iPhone. But it's not without its frustrations, including some ugly difficulty spikes and a linearity that it never quite manages to hide.

It's gorgeous, it sounds amazing, and it translates reasonably well to touchscreen controls. There are annoying bugs here and there, though, like un-pressable buttons, bad guys stuck in walls, and the occasional crash.

Despite these niggles it's still an enjoyable and impressive addition to the Deus Ex canon, and proof that major console companies are starting to take the App Store a little more seriously.
Deus Ex: The Fall
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 10 July 2013
An ambitious, flawed, but ultimately entertaining FPS, Deus Ex: The Fall is well worth a look
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Have Your Say
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Show: Latest | Oldest
Jun 2013
Post count:
mw1 | 15:34 - 24 July 2013
the game ended so fast. while this was not good in the short term, i feel hungry for more! perhaps a little more explanation about new game+ is necessary, like the suddenly-missing-crosshair. all in all, i have no regrets buying this. true, the aiming is quite tricky. but that's what people used to say about console FPS (when comparing to PC FPS) way back. perhaps the upcoming officially approved game controllers would help with this, and i'd like to see Deus Ex: The Fall as one of the pioneering few that allow their use. Hacking minigame is still awesome in this game! Also, turning a robot against its fellow humans is one of the most gratifying feelings in this game. long live Deus Ex on iPhone! =)
Jul 2013
Post count:
@appfreak | 09:04 - 21 July 2013
There's an update that addresses some of these issues but I'm still disappointed with dumb enemy AI. As mentioned in the review, the enemies will get tougher, but not clever.

If this is going to be an episodic game I hope the content addresses 1) cover mechanics and 2) the enemy behaviour
Oct 2012
Post count:
@britishgaming | 10:41 - 12 July 2013
AppsGoer. More like AppsGoAway.
Jul 2013
Post count:
EvaniaM | 10:00 - 12 July 2013
I loved all the lore and exploring. Various emails, voice recordings, and eBooks reveal lots of details about the world of Deus Ex and it
Jul 2012
Post count:
Contest Chris | 07:43 - 11 July 2013

I got totally owned there. Good to know the big guns hang out at regular places like the rest of us, otherwise knows as the 99%.

Now, since it's not (yet) on the iPad 2, I hope it comes to Android soon enough so I can play there.

Anyone have any idea when the Android version will be out?
Jul 2011
Post count:
Divisionbell | 00:24 - 11 July 2013
Touchscreen controls are in no way better than dual stick controls. I'm pretty sure that's written in stone somewhere....
Jun 2013
Post count:
FortySe7en | 21:42 - 10 July 2013
Contest Chris, we do read comments, follow forums, and check all reviews (no matter how big or small).
We very much care what people say and value your feedback!

Emmalise Piquette, may I suggest you check out the FAQ and technical support page for the game or try the solutions described in the game's appstore description? If the device is supported & not jailbroken into oblivion it should certainly be stable and playable.

Adam from Square-Enix
Please have in mind I am in no way an official spokesmen so I may not answer to stuff, but I do read everything!
Apr 2013
Post count:
Emmalise Piquette | 20:22 - 10 July 2013
Am I the only one for whom this is crash city? I can't even get into the game on my iTouch 5.

Frankly, I find the hate for touchscreen FPS controls misguided. Are they as good as a keyboard and mouse? Hell no, but implemented well they work a lot better than the abysmal setup that is dual stick controls, and yet people still manage to play games with those. I haven't had the chance to play the game, obviously, to see if this is a good control implementation, but if it isn't that's on the developer not the platform.
Dec 2012
Post count:
Eriatarka | 20:15 - 10 July 2013
Rather than consumable IAP, it would have been nice if the developers had made a free version which only had the first level (with a
Dec 2012
Post count:
Eriatarka | 20:12 - 10 July 2013
FPS games just don't work on a touch-screen, its a ridiculous concept

Not to mention the consumable IAP. Wont even bother to try this one.
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