iPhone Life magazine

Gaming news and reviews: Wolf 3D, Doom Resurrection, Toki Tori

1. If you liked Wolfeinstein 3D back in 1992 (or later), you will most likely want to check out the iPhone version of the title.

It’s the exact replicate of the original (IBM PC) title, except for the digitized sound, which, unfortunately, isn’t stereo. This means – if you wear stereo headphones or use stereo speakers – you won’t hear where you’re attacked from (unlike with the original, 1992 PC title, which did use stereo sound effects). Fortunately, you can still see the direction of the attacker on your icon at the bottom: if you’re attacked from the right, then, some blood is displayed on right side of the icon, and vice versa.

While, in general, the on-screen (touch) controls are very bad when it comes to first person shooters or action games on the iPhone, I’ve found the ones in Wolf3D pretty usable. Sure, it is still a far cry away from a decent hardware D-pad; nevertheless, I had little problems controlling the game when using the D-pad for movement and the accelerometer for sliding, as opposed to many action games (e.g., Archon). I had no problems with getting to Episode 4 in no time.

I highly recommend this title if you would like to play Wolf 3D (again). The iPhone version is pretty engaging and is big fun. Happy gaming!

You may want to check out the (free) Lite version first to see whether the control method is any good. The full version costs $3.

2. Doom Resurrection

I’ve also played Doom Resurrection quite a bit. As opposed to Wolf 3D, it’s not a re-implementation of the “classic” Doom but an entirely different game, which can’t surely even be called a first person shooter. That is, you can’t freely move around – your character follows a given path. While the game is fun and, programmatically, excellent (flawless graphics, stereo sound etc.), I haven’t found it as enjoyable (despite the technical superiority) as Wolf 3D. If you’re looking for a traditional FPS, you may want to look elsewhere – particularly if you take the pretty hefty price tag ($10) of the title into account.

Note that this is my personal opinion: there are a lot of folks that state this game is worth $10. See for example THIS, THIS and THIS, the latter being a forum thread.

Also note that the high price tag can pretty much be explained by the title not being a simple conversion using already-existing artwork but an iPhone-only title.

Surely, the lack of free moving also has its good sides: the inherent problem with iPhone gaming (the lack of any hardware D-pad) is effectively fixed by not being able to move anywhere. The only control you have are four screen areas (for dodging / getting into cover; changing weapons; reloading weapons [of course, the game also reloads them automatically so you aren’t forced to tap this area when your magazine becomes empty] and firing) and the accelerometer, which lets you target. Fortunately, you can re-calibrate the accelerometer; however, I’ve found almost impossible to aim sufficiently when lying on my back.

3. Toki Tori

If you read my Roundup of All Pocket PC Games Part I, you’ll see Toki Tori was an excellent title for the Pocket PC. It has also been ported to the iPhone – making use of the excellent graphic acceleration capabilities (and the higher resolution screen) of the hardware. It also sports great, stereo music, which seems to change on different maps. (Note that some people reported sound / music problems / stops. I’ve also encountered some very short pauses now and then on my iPhone 3G, but they were far and between and didn’t really turn out to be disturbing.)

Fortunately, controlling the game has turned out to be much easier than I expected. An action game like this would require perfect timing. Here, you need to set the destination instead of trying to control

The title is at a grand, 80% sale ($1) only. I do think it’s a steal for one buck only – go get it. (There’s also a Lite version, should you want to give it a try first.)
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Werner Ruotsalainen is an iOS and Java programming lecturer who is well-versed in programming, hacking, operating systems, and programming languages. Werner tries to generate unique articles on subjects not widely discussed. Some of his articles are highly technical and are intended for other programmers and coders.

Werner also is interested in photography and videography. He is a frequent contributor to not only mobile and computing publications, but also photo and video forums. He loves swimming, skiing, going to the gym, and using his iPads. English is one of several languages he speaks.