By Werner Ruotsalainen on Wed, 12/10/2008
In my opinion, the best turn-based strategy game ever released for Windows Mobile, Orions: Legend of Wizard, has just been released at a very low introductory price ($1.99 / 1.79 euros). (On the screenshot below, this isn’t visible as I’ve purchased it from AppStore right away; hence the “Installed” tag. With the, compared to Windows Mobile or other platforms, really cheap AppStore prices, it was a no-brainer for me. After all, I’ve paid $20 for the first two episodes on Windows Mobile – and it was already a, IIRC, 20% rebate.)
First, if you don’t know what this title is all about, make sure you check out my original Strategy Guide at http://www.smartphonemag.com/cms/blogs/3/the_orions_legend_of_wizards_strategy_gu for a complete strategy guide for the game. It also has links to reviews of the game. Note that you will also want to read the guide for more info on actually playing the game.
I’ve played a bit with it and I can state it isn’t (much) worse than the Windows Mobile original; not in the least. Sure, it has some problems like
- the complete lack of networked (or local) multiplayer support. Also, it’d be nice to be able to play against a Windows Mobile opponent, for that matter.
- the lack of any add-on packages like Orions: The Second Age and the latest Orions: Deckmasters. (See http://www.smartphonemag.com/cms/blog/9/review-strategy-guide-best-game-add-year-so-far-orions-deckmasters for more info on these.)
- animations and similar special effects aren’t as pretty as on Windows Mobile (albeit not THAT bad)
- there’s no loading/menu song
- the in-game icons have been directly taken from the QVGA Windows Mobile version by adding a huge title to all icons at the bottom. This also means the real size of these icons have been decreased a bit. Nevertheless, it isn’t that annoying, particularly not if you haven’t seen the Windows Mobile version with its about 50% larger icons.
Knowing the frequency of updates on Windows Mobile, I’m pretty sure at least some of these problems will be fixed.
Finally, a personal note. I’ve long been pretty much inactive. Sorry about that: I’ve been working on two projects at the same time (fortunately, one of them, will be finished tomorrow), and, on top of that, I ride three hours a day in order to lose some weight. Also, I’ve spent some time on reading everything (all the possible forums etc.) DSLR-related in order to be able to purchase a DSLR and some ultra-wide lenses. Finally, I’ve settled for the Canon 1000D with the 18-55 and 55-250 IS kit lens, and the Tokina 11-16/2.8 ultrawide lens on top of that. The former can be got for really cheap (about $600, which is quite a bargain if you take the individual price of the two lens into account), letting me also fork out the appr. $600 for the ultrawide lens.
That is, I have simply had no free time for writing. This, however, doesn’t mean I’ve completely been idling when it comes to the iPhone – I’ve tested hundreds of games and apps and will very soon publish some huge(!) comparison charts.