Spiral Episode 1 Review
- Gameplay and narrative flow nicely.
- Flits between combat, platforming, and other elements with conviction.
- A well realised visual style.
- Some control issues.
- Saps your battery.
This action adventure that might be too linear for some, but generates real momentum with its story, impressive world, and varied gameplay.
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- App Store Info
Spiral is certainly a strange beast. It features a very striking, and sometimes gorgeous visual style. It's got competent voice acting and an intriguing narrative. The gameplay not only offers variety, but incorporates touch controls relatively well. Saying all of this, the game plays havoc on your battery, and some of the aspects of the experience are not as well implemented as they should be.
You play as Tempus, a young amnesiac who shares a body with a robotic arm called AVA. On contract to the military, you come across a conspiracy involving the echelons of power that is somehow linked to the deadly spiral virus that is decimating the population. The game leads you along by the arm through this mystery, breaking up plotting with combat, one-touch platforming, and forced stealth sections.
Tapping and holding will create a reticle that will guide Tempus through the world (with double tapping acting as a run). Likewise, combat is handled with a combination of taps and swipes.
Tempus's arm changes to three distinct weapons depending on whether an enemy is at close, medium, or long range. A single tap will execute a single attack with your gun, staff, or blades. Holding your finger down on an enemy will charge up a strong attack which will usually hit more than one foe if they are clumped together. Blocks are handled automatically.
The combat is fairly fluid, but does suffer on the iPhone screen, with taps sometimes being misread, and camera controls proving a tad finniky. Defeating foes and completing objectives will award you with experience points, which you can use to level up your attributes. The game automatically spends this points by default, but you can change to a manual level up system, or a balanced one.
With all that Spiral does right, it is certainly not for everyone. The visuals are downright breathtaking in some sequences, but some may find the cartoonish representation of the characters in this world off-putting. Some may also dislike the very linear nature of the gameplay. In its defence, there is a real flow to the progression, one which should keep you glued to your screen.
Or at least it would if the game wasn't such a resource hog. In a little under an hour of play, the game had sapped the iPhone battery from near full to twenty percent. Worrying to say the least.
And then there's the price. This is episode one and it's nearly six dollars at launch. If the upcoming episodes cost the same amount, the high entry level may render it a niche title. Still, it's clear to see that the developers put a lot of passion and effort into this project, and it would be great to see such a title find an audience.
DescriptionSPIRAL Episode 1 is the first part of a new, unique action adventure game trilogy, that truly brings the full experience of console gaming to iOS, with beautiful 3D graphics, exploration and real time combat… all controlled with a unique ‘one touch’ gesture system.
IMPORTANT! SPIRAL HAS BEEN DEVELOPED TO RUN ONLY FOR iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S, iPad 2, iPad 3, iPad 4, iPad Air, iPad Mini, iPad Mini 2, and iPod Touch 5th Generation.
To OPTIMIZE your playing experience, you may want to turn off other apps before playing.
Languages supported: English, French, Italian, German, Spanish and Japanese.
GAMESAKU - 5 out of 5
TOUCH ARCADE - 4.5 out of 5
148 APPS - 4.5 out of 5
APPLENAPPS - 4.5 out of 5
VANDAL - 9 out of 10
HOBBY CONSOLAS - 82 out of 100
APP SPY - 4 out of 5
APP SMILE - 4 out of 5
GAMES IN THE POCKET - 4 out of 5
GAMESAKU - “A Premium Class Game Experience“
TOUCH ARCADE - “Spiral hits all the right notes“
148 APPS - “Spiral is a fantastic game and a breath of fresh air for the genre“
APPLENAPPS - “It's one iOS experience not to be missed“
VANDAL - “Makes us wonder where's the line between console and mobile gaming“
HOBBY CONSOLAS - “Technically speaking it's amongst the best we've ever seen on iOS"
APP SPY - “Generates real momentum with its story, impressive world, and varied gameplay“
APP SMILE - “Featuring a polished presentation and a genuinely interesting storyline“
GAMES IN THE POCKET - “Playing as Tempus is a real pleasure“
WELCOME TO THE CITY OF SOLEIL
Enjoy a 5+ hour story as Tempus – an investigator suffering from strange dreams. While trying to figure out the link between the deadly ‘Spiral’ disease afflicting the population, and the increasing violence and instability occurring around him, Tempus becomes the center of an underground plot that threatens the entire world around him.
RICH 3D GRAPHICS AND EFFECTS
SPIRAL boasts a unique art style, with expressive fully lip-synced characters, rich explorable environments, and console quality visual effects such as bloom and full screen anti-aliasing.
GAMEPLAY DESIGNED FOR YOUR TOUCHSCREEN!
Spiral features gameplay and controls tailored from the ground up for touch screens. Exploring beautiful 3D worlds, interacting with characters or puzzles, and taking part in high octane combat, all done with a simple and intuitive ‘one touch’ gesture system.
HOURS OF GAMEPLAY IN ARENA MODE
Take part in an engaging story mode, or play in one of four Arena modes. Regardless of which mode you play in, Tempus gains experience to unlock new abilities and weapons.
THE LATEST iOS FEATURES
SPIRAL fully integrates Game Center Achievements, Leaderboards, and Challenges, Social Networking, as well as offering an iCloud save system, HDMI output support and Game Controllers.
For more information on Spiral, please visit www.spiralthegame.com
Developed by Pixel Hero Games
** MORE FROM PIXEL HERO **
What's New in Version 1.4- Added support for new iPhone screen resolutions.
- Added Japanese localisation.
- Fixed bug that caused the game to select the lowest graphics settings in new devices.
- Fixed localisation bug.
- Compressed game data reducing the storage size and disk access.
- Improved code to reduce device thermal throttling.