The Dark Knight Rises; an epic movie, an amazing game and this week’s App Store Editor’s Choice. Designed specifically for the mobile gaming platform, The Dark Knight Rises (TDKR) is a perfect and stellar accompaniment to the blockbuster summer movie of the same name.
The graphics are exceptional, I could spend a great deal of time just looking at the scenery of Gotham under siege or studying the intricate detail of the Batman's armored suit. Though if I wanted to nitpick, there are some fine points of the game that I would've expected better, from a company like Game Loft, that has such vast and extensive experience designing these types of games. It can be rather glitchy at times in fact. Bad guys get stuck running in mid-air or behind walls, missons may become unavailable for some inexplicable reason, mouths don't move when the characters are speaking, the streets are (relative to what one might expect in Gotham) empty and deserted for the most part and it’s always a dark and rainy night, at least so far in my game playing experience. Additionally, game play can get rather repetitve, even when everything does work as it should. Grappling from buildings and fighting bad guys, with the interspersed bomb diffusal or vehicular missions are about the extent of the game. That being said, what game doesn't get repetitive with time? Even Infinity Blade II, Angry Birds, Mass Effect: Infiltrator and Batman: Arkham Asylum are basically the same thing over and over again after enough time is spent playing them. Such is the nature of the iOS gaming environment at this point in it's evolution. General bug fixes, moving lips and pedestrian and vehicular traffic would be nice to see included in an update, as would evidence of the time changing from day to night. Those gripes aside, TDKR is a grim and brooding adventure that stays fairly true to the storyline of the movie.
Although the game utilizes sound-alike actors, it still features some of the best character voice acting of any iOS game I've had the pleasure of playing lately (right up there with N.O.V.A. 3 and Modern Combat: Fallen Nation, two other commendable Game Loft titles), Game Loft, in my opinion, has outdone themselves yet again. The action is set at a methodical pace, allowing the suspense and tension to build in a manner worthy of the Dark Knight. The fights are exquisitely choreographed, and on par with any Ultimate Fighting bout, with every attention given to the details of the Batman's gymnastic, acrobatic battle skills. He flies, he performs jumping, spinning kicks, head-butts, flips and much more, all with fancy cinematic effects like rotating camera angles and slow motion at critical moments, and the graphics are pure eye candy.
Whether you've seen the movie or not, this game is highly enjoyable and very addictive, and while the iOS Game is in line with the movie's storyline, playing the game won't totally spoil the movie for you either, in the event you start the game before you make it to the theater.
As befits the Batman story, there's a great balance between hi-tech gadgetry courtesy of Lucius of Wayne enterprises and Bruce Wayne's hard-earned, ninja-like skills in action. You'll find yourself zip lining around Gotham on your grappling hook gun, gliding through the skies with the aid of your batcape and doing battle with flash grenades, batarangs and even the same afore mentioned grappling gun. We are even treated to the Bat-pod and The Bat, which if you haven't already seen the movie, I can't speak of too much without spoiling things, except to say that they are awesome vehicles that become available to you during the course of the game. Just wait till you feast your eyes though...
The action is fast paced, and while challenging, it's not so hard that you need to rely on the available in-app purchases to advance and the controls are such that they are intuitive, simple, elegant and unobtrusive. As a video gamer of over 30 years now, my old fingers and thumbs appreciate the simplicity of the control scheme and the fact that while the action get fast and furious, my digits don't get overly stressed with this instant classic.
From the highest heights of Gotham City, to the deep and ominous worlds of the subways and the depth of the Pit, The Dark Knight Rises is sure to be a favorite with hardcore and casual gamers alike. In fact, this exhilarating game is one I can enthusiastically recommend for most ages (9 and up) and all skill levels. If you are looking for a great game in which you can thoroughly immerse yourself check out The Dark Knight Rises. You won't be sorry you did!
Here's a video trailer below, for your enjoyment!