For Pete’s sake, in this review, we’re going to be using the name “Predators”. Sound good? Good. Now moving on to the next important thing: the game itself.
Chillingo and Fox Entertainment held hands to produce and publish Predators for the iPhone and iPad, which is most likely based on the movie coming out quite soon actually. The game involves you as the predator hunting down men of all shapes and sizes: snipers, machine gunners, knife-wielders, and bludgeon-wielders.
You also have a total of 25 missions to fight through and a variety of options such as invisibility, thermal vision, and some interesting combos to rip the head off your enemy or split an enemy’s body in half. Each mission is based on a scoring system based on how many combos or trophy kills (rip the head off the enemy) you executed.
Along with that, Predators runs on both the iPhone and the iPad, making for quite a sweet deal at $2.99. But giving Predators the benefit of the doubt, this review is based on the game running on Apple’s iPad.
Character Models: I was going to put graphics as a like here, but it’s basically more of the character models. The predator (that’s you) was pretty detailed in its ways and looks, and the enemies weren’t too shabby looking either. Angry Mob Games did a surprisingly solid job of making a game look like a professionally-done game.
Blood and gore: If you’re someone who loves gruesome action, then you’ll love the gruesome action that Predators offers. The trophy kills will have you go, “Woah”, and the body splices will have you go, “Dang.” Predators does a great job of capturing classic blood and gore on the iPad, and it’s definitely a title for those looking to sate their violent needs.
Value: I love universal apps. And that’s final.
Tutorial: The game is technically around 14 missions, since the rest is basically the tutorial. When half a game is a tutorial, yet they market the game as 25 missions, there’s something wrong with the picture. I’m quite disappointed that they decided to sneak it in like that, and most people honestly don’t need an 11-mission tutorial to finally understand the game. Put in a help section or an optional tutorial, but don’t make it part of the game as a mission.
Backgrounds: The reason I didn’t put graphics in as a like is for one reason: the backgrounds. The backgrounds are much less the same in every single mission; moving that log 5 pixels to the right doesn’t count as a whole new background.
Invisibility: Sure the tutorials support invisibility and teach you how to stealth kill, but for some odd reason, half the missions don’t even support it. They support thermal vision, sure, but stealth kills are nigh impossible if you’re only invisible for like two seconds. It seems like a useless feature to me if it’s not going to even work in half of the missions.
Repetitive: Killing the same enemies over and over again will eventually get to you. By the first 30 minutes of playing the game, I had to put it down because it was getting way too repetitive and slightly boring. I picked it up a couple hours later, but the sheer repetitive nature of the game doesn’t allow for long periods of playing time.
Specialty moves: Trophy kills and body splices are nice and all, but it would be even better if enemies didn’t beat and shoot at you while you’re executing your specific moves. I can note plenty of times when I was executing a body splice and the enemies would surround me and beat me to death while I’m helplessly trying to split some guy’s body in half. It doesn’t make sense to me in any way, as it causes you to not want to trophy kill or body splice anyone anymore. Even making the body splice last like a second rather than 5 seconds would be a nice improvement.
Predators could have been great. The hands-on preview I received was only met with a certain amount of time, and I absolutely enjoyed my time with it. But then I started playing it for a few days, a week even. Then the negatives of the game started to come out and outweigh the positives; repetitive, bland backgrounds, useless special moves, useless invisibility… the list is quite long if you ask me. But hey, if you’re into a few moments of awesome, then I guess it’s worth a look. Otherwise, this is a pass.