BackStab – Review
App Type: Uncategorized
Version #: 1.0.0
Date Released: 2011-06-23
Price: 6.99User Rating:
Backstab is the latest game brought to us by Gameloft, the developer responsible for landmark iPhone games such as Dungeon Hunter and N.O.V.A. This is perhaps their most technically ambitious game to date, as gamers are thrown into a free-roaming sandbox set on a lush Caribbean island.
The story places you in the role of Navy Captain Henry Blake, who gets betrayed by a man whose villainy is instantly obvious from his unnaturally posh English accent – and the fact that he’s called Kane. With the help of an attractive female rogue, your mission is to get your revenge on the evil Kane and clear your name. The missions along the way are varied, as you get to swim, man cannons, and slash your way through hordes of identikit English redcoats.
But the story isn’t what this game is really about. What is really intriguing here is its world, and the question of whether the iPhone can handle this kind of scale. For the most part, the answer is ‘yes.’ The game looks great, and although distant buildings tend to pop abruptly into view, the game world, with its lush beaches and large cities filled with beggars, hookers, and side-quests is surprisingly immersive. Among the side-missions are races and an amusing ‘arena’ mode, in which you get to fight creatures as varied as bears, zombies and giants.
Yet with a game as ambitious as this there are bound to be flaws. The touch-screen feels fairly limited for the free-running Assassin’s Creed style of gameplay that Backstab demands. At certain points you find yourself jumping into the abyss or falling off a ledge for no reason. The camera sometimes feels awkward, and it can be a real nightmare navigating the frankly unnecessary platform elements of the game.
Combat, meanwhile, is simplistic but fun. There is a single button for attacks, which you tap at frantically to unleash undeservedly stylish combos. If you’re in the right position at the right time, you can unleash some brutal finishing moves, including a surprisingly graphic decapitation. Do well enough in combat, and you can temporarily make enemies go slow-mo while you chop them down at a normal pace.
BackStab is one of the most technically accomplished games on the iPhone and is a genuine feast on the eyes. Sometimes it feels as though the gameplay just doesn’t match up to visionary game world, but an accessible combat system makes up for this. The storyline is decent, and the missions varied, but the main selling-point of this game is its lush, large world, which holds plenty of surprises and treasures for the more adventurous gamers.
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Would I Buy Again:Yes, it?s free.
Who Is It For:People who like the freedom of sandbox games.
What I Like:The big, beautiful game world.
What I Don't Like:Frustrating platforming elements.
Final Statement:A big, flawed beauty of a game that sometimes looks better than it plays.
AN UNPRECEDENTED AND ORIGINAL BLOCKBUSTER FOR iOS GAMERS
• Discover a blockbuster production with the best graphics, an unprecedented story & endless content.
• Experience an action-packed adventure with open environments, deep combat, platforming and more.
WITNESS A DARK AND ACTION-PACKED TALE OF TREASON AND REVENGE
• Become a rogue killer with nothing left to live for but vengeance on those who betrayed him.
• Use agility, strength and cunning to get the drop on your target, eliminate them quickly and escape.
• Master the combo-based combat system to slay anyone standing between you and your prey.
FOR THE 1ST TIME ON iOS, EXPLORE A BEAUTIFUL 18TH CENTURY CARIBBEAN ISLAND
• Experience an immersive world through impressive character interactions and lifelike voice effects.
• Roam across a vast island full of exotic 3D environments like jungles, beaches, a volcano and more.
• Investigate 4 unique cities to find new quests and secrets.
Warning: This game is not compatible with iPod touch 3G 8GB and older devices. Compatible with iPad 2.
Article By Robert Zak
I'm an up-and-coming freelance writer (or so I like to think) specialising in film, apps and gaming. Aside from writing app reviews on what sometimes feels like a mass scale, I've also contributed work to The Independent and IGN.com, and am on the writing team of the popular Lifestyle blog, WhatCulture.com. Like what you see? Follow me on Twitter @Rob_Zed and get in touch!
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