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Infinity Blade II

For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

The circle of life

Product: Infinity Blade II | Developer: Chair Entertainment | Publisher: Epic Games | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0
Infinity Blade II iPhone, thumbnail 1
It's no surprise that Chair and Epic have followed up last year's Infinity Blade with a straight sequel. After all, this is triple-A smartphone gaming, a mammoth project that stands head and shoulders above everything else in the App Store in terms of polish.

And whilst Infinity Blade II isn't as revolutionary as its forebear, it's fitting that this second bloodline has added some tweaks to the original's genetic make-up that move the series forward.

The game continues where its predecessor left off, with a tale of vengeance and slaughter in a stylised mediaeval fantasy world. The task at hand is a familiar one. Traverse the rooms of a tower, killing everything in your path, using the money that you find to buy more powerful weapons and equipment.

Even more infinite-r

Eventually, you'll come across a boss character who's far too strong for you, and after a meagre attempt at defeating them, you'll be killed. Thanks to a quirk of the narrative, you'll come back to the castle with the same gear you were wearing when you died. You'll battle through to the same point, gaining XP and becoming tougher as you do, so that this time you won't be such a push over.

There's a stronger emphasis on story here, and more than a single chief antagonist, but the bare bones of the game remain the same. You explore the castle, tapping on blue circles on the screen to move around, until you're confronted by something that wants to kill you.

Foes range from brutish, club-wielding ogres to armour-plated knights and lithe, dual weapon-wielding acrobats. The Unreal Engine that powers the game renders these enemies in disgusting detail, and makes combat a real spectacle.

More weapons means more fun

Fights are controlled with a fluid range of swipes and taps, and are all about timing and pattern recognition. You can dodge oncoming blows, block them with your shield, or parry them with your sword.

Once you've broken your enemy's advance, you're free to let rip with a series of scything blows, all controlled by finger swipes. The original's magic system remains intact, requiring you to draw symbols on the screen to unleash your powers.

You have three types of weapon at your disposal - heavy, dual, and the sword and shield combo from the first game. Each of these has its own distinct play style. Heavy weapons are slow but pack a punch, whereas dual weapons are all about speedy attacks and massive combos.

Infinite blades, and clubs, too

Chair has added a new sense of scale to proceedings, with a bigger castle to explore and a storyline that tries to add some heart to your constant butchery. At times it works, but in a strange way the new additions pale against the epic, generational sweep of the smaller first game.

Where Infinity Blade II trumps the original is with its new combat flavours. Mastering the three distinct crafts is a real joy, and keeps the game's inherent repetitive nature at bay for far longer. Battles feel more nuanced and intuitive, and victories all the more satisfying.

Throw in crystals that augment your equipment, a wider range of enemies, and a graphical flare that's still impressive, and you're left with an incremental update that undeniably raises the bar, but by less than you might have hoped.

Infinity Blade II
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 1 December 2011
A brutal, cyclical action-RPG that builds on the foundations of its predecessor, Infinity Blade II is a showcase for everything that's right about sequels, but it's not the big leap forward that some might have been hoping for
Rate this game >> Average reader score: 
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Show: Latest | Oldest
Sep 2013
Post count:
Alexey | 19:24 - 2 September 2013
An empty game, with bizarre storyline and repeting gameplay. The game's goal is to kill, kill and kill tons of immortal monsters n creatures. The games passin at 1 hour then starts again. And so on. Afcource, bonus features might keep your interest for a while, but not for long.
Dunno, why Steve Jobs was piaring this game, I thought he was a wise man
Dec 2008
Post count:
klouud | 11:36 - 19 March 2012
I'm on my second play-through and I am very confused as to why I can't sell back items to the store. This seems really really dumb to me.
Oct 2011
Post count:
Eraser74 | 14:01 - 6 December 2011
Very very shallow review. Why did you not mention the savegame bug, that erases all of your progress or the drop in framerate, that renders the game almost unplayable?

One can
Jan 2011
Post count:
akira01 | 08:40 - 2 December 2011
This isn't an Action RPG at all....
This is a fighting game, as Punch Out, with some customization elements.
If you review this game as an action RPG, so, you must even give hime a 4, or a 3, but it is'nt an action/RPG game !!!!

If you review this game as a fighting game, you can't give him under 9 or 10...: 40 fighters, and a lot more variations with the attack modes , 3 defensive mode, 3 attack mode, incredible graphics, magics, lots of customization, very playable and hardcore at high level, etc, etc..

So very strage review, it seems you have miss the "core" of this game.
Dec 2010
Post count:
NoMoneyLeftBoy | 20:06 - 1 December 2011
Comparison? Sure:

iPhone4 - looks great but currently runs very choppily at times leading to touch-misreads that prove extremely frustrating in combat. This is an issue that will almost certainly be remedied in a future patch(es).

iPhone4s - looks fabulous and runs silky smooth, no issues at all. An amazing technical demonstration of the A5 in action.

..So as of right now I can't recommend it at 4.99 for original iPhone4 owners.

However iPhone4s owners now have the perfect showcase app to smugly show off to the iPhone4 owning masses. A short lived smugness as most iPhone4 contracts will be up for renewal around the next 'True' iPhone upgrade.

*I'm really not bitter, honest ;) *
Dec 2008
Post count:
klouud | 18:14 - 1 December 2011
This is my most anticipated game of the year! I saved IB1 for my i4S and boy am I glad I did! Right now I'm finishing up ShadowGun and need to complete IB1 before I take this game on.

This series seems to be the "Gold Standard" when it comes to iOS gaming. Heck! ~ it was ported to XBL for Pete's sake!

I really think this series can become iOS's "Halo" and/or "Mario".

Surprised you gave it an 8/10 tho.

Dec 2011
Post count:
kid baker | 17:44 - 1 December 2011
Another quickie review. No mention of the differences on the iPhone 4s version...?