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iPhone  header logo

Infinity Blade

For: iPhone   Also on: iPad

Infinite means to a finite end

Product: Infinity Blade | Developer: Chair Entertainment | Publisher: Epic Games | Format: iPhone | Genre: Action, RPG | Players: 1 | Networking: wireless (network) | Version: US | App version: 309.4MB
 
Infinity Blade iPhone, thumbnail 1
Infinity Blade isn't a paradigm shift. It isn't a revolution. It merely confirms what we've always known: great games are more than pretty graphics - they're about compelling gameplay too.

Developer ChAIR has raised the bar when it comes to presentation - Epic Games's Unreal Engine shines on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad - yet the real accomplishment is in marrying graphics with great gameplay. No longer is it acceptable to hide shallow gameplay behind awe-inspiring visuals.

A gripping blend of intuitive touch controls, engaging role-playing, and sharp graphics - Infinity Blade is a great game.

What if God was one of us?

The quest to slay the infamous God King isn't a perfect one, but it does hit all the right notes. You take the role of a righteous knight seeking to fell the maniacal leader, who sits high on his throne in a dilapidated castle. It's a futile effort, though, and after a failed first attempt it falls to your descendants to defeat the God King.

Repetition is intentionally built into Infinity Blade. Rather than visit new levels, you trudge through the same castle grounds in subsequent bloodlines. While a minor complaint, this lack of variety puts the focus on combat and character development - two areas in which the game excels.

Sword-fighting action and basic role-playing come together in a unique way, allowing you to battle enemies in real-time with swipes of the screen and level up with experience rewarded with victory. Neither is a revolutionary concept, yet straightforward, polished design make an impact.

The finger is mightier than the sword

Battles are surprisingly challenging and fun. Swiping the screen to attack is easy to understand, though tough to master. Strong, smart foes force you to vary your attacks in order to avoid damage.

Screen scribbling is a losing tactic because enemies can easily bypass such chaotic attacks by blocking your blows. Instead, you're pushed into breaking enemy attack chains by blocking with your shield, parrying with well-timed counterattacks, and casting gesture-based magic spells.

This carefully balanced combat system rewards skill and punishes carelessness, encouraging you to react and adapt to enemy tactics. It's a smart system and one that evolves over time to ensure you're just as challenged five hours into the game as you were in those first few battles.

Despite the limited bestiary, there are real differences in the way enemies fight. Nimble assassins execute speedy slashes that demand quick responses, whereas lumbering trolls issue slow but brutal blows.

Role-playing for dummies

Hand-in-hand with combat is a basic role-playing that strengthens your equipment with experience earned from battle. Each victory brings experience points that are divided amongst your equipped items, as well as your general person.

Once you amass enough experience, an item is considered mastered and you're given a point to assign to any of your core attributes (Health, Attack, Shield, and Magic). Additionally, upon levelling up you receive two points to allocate to your attributes.

It's a simple yet highly effective system that carries over with each new bloodline. In this way, the repetitive use of the castle grounds is countered by the continued development of your character. Still, Infinity Blade struggles with repetition and limited level design.

The short end of the stick

The problem isn't the on-rails approach - you're given liberty to pan the camera to find treasure chests, life-restoring potions, and bonus gold - it's the lack of variety in enemies and adherence to the same paths through the castle. Changing the route with each bloodline would mix things up.

Other issues affect Infinity Blade. Crashes to the home screen occurred infrequently, but often enough to note. The delayed multiplayer mode also sounds promising, although its absence in this initial release makes it feel incomplete.

None of these reduces the game's impact: in fact, these shortcomings underscore everything that has been done right. From its challenging combat system and simple role-playing to the glittering graphics, Infinity Blade is undeniably fun and worth every penny.
 
Infinity Blade
Reviewer photo
Tracy Erickson | 9 December 2010
An achievement on multiple levels, Infinity Blade is an engrossing game that should be recognised for its gameplay as much as its graphics
 
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Show: Latest | Oldest
Joined:
Jan 2012
Post count:
3
ldb | 16:01 - 5 January 2012
No it doesn't drop. Go to the negative world (lose the initial tutorial battle by unblocking and dying - first bloodline) and save up money.
Joined:
Dec 2008
Post count:
1340
klouud | 17:38 - 14 December 2011
anyone know how to get ahold of the infinity blade other than paying for it? Does it drop?

thanx
Joined:
Jan 2011
Post count:
21
BeatDown | 23:40 - 5 January 2011
I love this game! the graphics and game play are phenomenal!
I mean think about it for a second, its a mobile game.
Anonymous | 00:02 - 5 January 2011
The fighting system is laughably gimmicky and shallow flailing around with your finger!!! Feels and looks stupid and weightless.
Anonymous | 20:29 - 28 December 2010
first game i have brought on my ipad,this game has everything,great gameplay and great graphics.A must buy at only
Anonymous | 15:21 - 23 December 2010
Looks great, but gets boring very quickly. I get the feeling we will soon see more add ons to buy. Why not release the whole game at once or am I cynical when I say it looks like a way to make more money by releasing the game in parts you have to keep buying?
Anonymous | 15:31 - 20 December 2010
@akira01: and YOU are paid!!
Okay, it becomes harder in later levels, but i miss a varied gameplay. it is always the same.
For me it was a big disappointment. Take a look in the Appstore. Im not alone with this feedback...
Anonymous | 07:49 - 14 December 2010
The gameplay ist boring, only the Graphics are great.
over and over the same fights and no free movement.
its casual and only a hype for graphic fanboys...!
Anonymous | 03:19 - 9 December 2010
Awesome review ~ and I totally agree on its shortcomings, notably the path repetition. The crashes are also a bit of a pain, though this should hopefully be ironed out with an update.

It would be interesting how multiplayer plays out though, especially if ChAIR keeps magic use in the mix (though I suppose blocking normally would be the answer to this? Perhaps maybe it does more damage?).

Great game!
Joined:
Dec 2008
Post count:
1340
klouud | 02:59 - 9 December 2010
Does it work on the 3GS? What is the performance comparisons between devices?
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