Price: $2.99 Download on the App Store
Monster RPG 2 seeks to bring retro, role-playing style to your iPhone. The atmosphere for the game is great and really captures the spirit of older video games. But too many interface issues keep this from being a true hit.
The plot of the game is pretty much standard RPG stuff: you must take a simple villager, equip her with weapons, magic, and some fancy combat moves in order to save the world. You battle other monsters, animals, magicians, and a whole slew of characters. The combat takes place in the classic RPG style, where you take turns trying to slug one another to death with your arsenal, taking the occasional breather to heal yourself.
The challenge for Monster RPG 2 was to create an app that had the graphics and interface of an older game, yet worked with the touch-screen capabilities of the iPhone. In one sense they succeeded, because Monster RPG will have you reaching for a joystick once it pops on screen. However, using the touch screen on the game was very haphazard and consistent. There is a method for switching to a virtual control pad, but even that process involves some bugs.
I highly recommend playing through the Monster RPG 2 tutorial, because unlike many games the controls are quite counter-intuitive. For example, equipping yourself with weapons involves tapping in the corner or shaking your phone to change screens. Once you do this, you must drag a weapon to another area of the screen, then return to the battle scene and tap on a tiny icon to choose a weapon. Once this is done you can finally attack by swiping in the direction of your enemy.
Despite some of the hiccups, the game play is pretty fun and will appeal to any RPG fan. The depth of the game is pretty impressive, and it is always great to see a game offering that takes us back to some of the earlier days.
With some interface tweaks and improvements Monster RPG 2 could be a great game. But the bugs need conquering first.