Infinity Blade II Review
When the original Infinity Blade debuted last year for iOS devices, it blew away a lot of people, churning out the kind of unbelievable graphics that were usually reserved for high-end game consoles. It also introduced very effective touch-screen gameplay as you dodged incoming attacks and then struck with a multitude of combo attacks. It truly is an impressive title – but its sequel, which is now available on the App Store, is even better.
Once again, you're a brave knight who has to fight your way through a series of battles, with enemies big and small, as you seek out the God King, a ruthless opponent who has killed your father. But even if you do manage to get to him right away, using the shortest route possible, you'll be killed in a hurry due to his overwhelming strength. The true joy in Infinity Blade II is playing through it multiple times, discovering hidden paths, enormous enemies and cool weapon additions that will (eventually) give you the strength to overthrow your elder's murderer.
Most games get tiring after the first time through, but that isn't the case with Infinity Blade II. This game's got replayability aplenty, between its multiple paths, hidden treasures and many weapons. In fact, learning how to use each weapon effectively is a fun chore. Some are better-used offensively, such as a large battle-axe that leaves you somewhat defenseless for incoming strikes, while others make you speedier in battle, like a pair of twin blades. It pays to experiment and see what works best for you here.
What's more, you can also access a number of spells to help you on your journey. Some provide defensive protection, enabling you to resist more damage. Others provide a distraction, giving you the chance to strike with a lethal combo. The upgrade system that worked so well in the original Infinity Blade returns, with plenty of room to level up. The stronger you become, the more ready you’ll be for the God King.
The gameplay once again relies on the dodge-and-strike tactics that worked so well with the first game. The touch screen plays a vital tool in planning your attacks and getting out of harm's way when an enemy charges. But this time around you've got some additional planning to do, thanks to larger enemies that can dish out even more damage. Everyone eventually can be brought down; it's just a matter of learning weak points and striking with a vengeance. It really is a lot of fun
Chair Entertainment has also pushed the envelope for presentation with this sequel. The characters are even more beautiful in appearance this time around, moving with fluidity and providing plenty of personality in their attacks. The way you can design your hero is a nice touch too, as you can modify armor along with weapons. The only downfall is that the game doesn't run as efficiently on older iPad and iPhone devices as it does the iPhone 4S and iPad 2. In some cases, it almost crashed completely on the older models. So if you're stuck with one of those older devices, you might want to wait to download the game until Chair preps a proper patch, which should be in the next couple of weeks.
As for audio, not much has changed in Infinity Blade II – nor did it really need to. The sound effects are meaty, with lots of sword clangs and attack sounds. The music is dramatic when it kicks in, even if it's intermittent.
Unless you have an older device, we can't think of a single reason you should avoid Infinity Blade II. It once again reaches beyond what we thought iOS gaming could be, with exquisite visuals, terrific gameplay and enough options to keep you coming back for more. This is possibly the best seven bucks you'll spend all year.
File Size: 939 MB
Developer: Chair Entertainment
Platform: iPad 2/iPhone 4S
iPadNewsDaily Rating (out of 4): ****