Touching is Magical
As I’ve said many a time, the iPhone is a great little platform for all sorts of games. From FPS games to simulations, they’ve got you covered. For a few developers that includes the lofty RPG genre, and the titles in this article are of superb quality. Instead of seeming like the indie developed schlock of a few years back there are some really great entries in the App Store for quest loving gamers. Here are a few of my favorites.
If this had come out in 1998, it would’ve been a hit on the Sony Playstation, but instead this pint sized package comes to the iPhone. Everything is top notch and I would expect nothing less from Square-Enix these days. Following a group of people taken at random to some strange arena, Chaos Rings isn’t quite the contrived storm you would expect. Combat is a blast and the characters are well developed despite being gigantic stereotypes. The huge price tag may be off putting, but you’d be paying more for the same title on any other portable console.
Square’s debut has been ported to just about every console imaginable in the twenty-three years since its original release. Having such an important bit of gaming history on a portable device is absolutely great though, and it doesn’t cost nearly as much as purchasing it for your other portables. The touch interface is a breeze to work with and the game is still just as challenging nearly twenty-five years later. Any RPG fan needs to play this, regardless of their personal preferences just to see the game that made the genre famous for video gamers.
An old school dungeon crawler like Might and Magic is a gem to see on the iPhone. The Quest boasts tons of content and multiple expansions and is a fairly deep game to get into. The gameplay is fantastic, really calling to mind the era of old DOS RPGs which were blindingly difficult. It takes guts to put such a risky title out these days, even keeping in mind the seeming lack of nostalgia amongst mainstream gamers. Thankfully, the iPhone makes titles like this affordable and rewarding to develop.
Crimson Gem Saga
It’s sort of rare to see a game of this length on the iDevices. Crimson Gem Saga is a port of Astonishia Story, which is confusing to contemplate, but it boasts a good 40 hours of gameplay. The story itself is rather generic, but the battle system really reminds me of Grandia and that’s a good thing. Crimson Gem Saga is proof that the iDevices aren’t quite the dumbed down device most developers seem to think it to be. Thanks to efforts like this and from Square-Enix, we’re getting games that would be just as happy to rest on the RPG haven that is the original Playstation.
A love it or hate it title, this game is a broad sci-fi RPG with tons of depth to it. Combat’s a little wonky, but the setting is fantastic and it’s great that developers are taking these sort of risks on a device that usually appeals to the casual crowd. Xenome is a huge title and is the first in an episodic saga, which hopefully continues on without a hitch. If you’ve got an itch for something a little less fantasy, then this is your game without a shadow of a doubt.
The RPG selection for Apple’s device will only get more and more diverse as time goes on, big name titles like Final Fantasy Tactics and Kingdom of Amalur drop in the near future after all. If you’re searching for epics of great length, you can finally look to the iDevice to provide it for you.