I won’t lie to you; I haven’t quite polished off Infinity Blade III, but after a frankly outrageous 10-hour shift last night (stopping only to eat pizza and make coffee), and a further three-hour session this afternoon, I figure I’m in a pretty good position to let you know if it’s worth playing or not.
Having said that, with Infinity Blade and Infinity Blade II standing out as two of the greatest mobile gaming achievements to date, there was never really much question of Infinity Blade III failing to match up. Yes, it’s awesome.
To borrow a phrase from Cliff “Cliffy B” Bleszinksi, Infinity Blade III is “bigger, better and more badass”.
The show kicks off with an impressive animated intro, though to be honest, I got completely lost somewhere around Infinity Blade II, and consequently have no idea what’s going on.
In the early stages of Infinity Blade III, some guy sacrifices himself, and subsequently you battle your way to his hideout to check on a datapod thingy he’s uploaded some vital data to.
Upon arrival, you find an imposter, who’s really not fooling anyone – or even attempting to hide the fact that he’s an evil douche, and when you beat him, he spontaneously combusts. What. The. Fu…?
As such, don’t worry if you haven’t played the first two games. It’s all just an excuse to fight giant screen-filling monsters with an array of increasingly powerful weapons.
One of the major new thingies in Infinity Blade III is the introduction of two playable characters, namely Siris and Isa. Some acts dictate who you control while others give you the choice; the final act sees the two working together. Lovely.
There’s not a great deal of difference between Siris and Isa, with the mechanics largely dictated by your choice of weapon (you can’t have a shield with two-handed weapons, for example), though Isa tends to sneak around more in the cut scenes, and often starts off fights with a cheeky shot of her crossbow.
The other big difference is the central hideout thing, which plays host to a number of allies. There’s the woman who turns up in a ship with discounted items for sale (she’ll also buy your old stuff), the blacksmith who can upgrade weapons (he’s rescued at the end of Act II-ish), the potion master (there are ingredients scattered around the playing area), and the guy who can fuse gems together.
Like I was saying in my Angry Birds Star Wars II review on Friday, what we have here is more of the same, but when “the same” is of such a ridiculously high caliber, that’s not a bad thing.
I did have a few minor gripes, however. As in the previous installments, Infinity Blade III is ultimately a grind, and while you can replay most fights if you happen to lose, defeat at the hands of a boss sends you back to the beginning of the act. Resultantly, it can feel a tad tedious.
Speaking of the grind, you can hurry things along in Infinity Blade III by buying currency with GBP. Slightly cheeky considering the £4.99 entry fee, though obviously there’s no obligation to do so.
Finally, I did occasionally question Infinity Blade III’s responsiveness. Occasionally I felt like I should’ve nailed a parry (swiping into an enemy’s attack) only to take a hammer or sword or giant column to the face.
It’s hard – or even impossible – to know if that’s because my timing was simply off, but an iPad 4-owning friend mentioned that he was experiencing something similar, saying: “I don’t feel like it’s doing what my fingers are doing half the time.”
Still, what we have here is a AAA title that’s absolutely worthy of the Infinity Blade name, an unquestionably worth £4.99.
- Looks great
- It’s all very grandiose and over-the-top (i.e. silly)
- Tons of weapons and stuff in the shop
- The allies
- Loads to do
- The grind can be tedious
- It’s £4.99 with in-app purchases
- Occasionally questionable responsiveness
Summary: Infinity Blade III doesn’t exactly reinvent the touch-fight genre, but it’s up there with the very best games the App Store has to offer.
Price: £4.99 @ App Store
Compatibility: Requires iOS 7.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.