Tag Archives: Gameloft

Backstab Review: A Story of Betrayal, Love, and Quite a bit of Action

The story starts out with you, the main character, as a high-ranking official in the British army going to war with the intruding Spanish army, presumably sometime during the 18th century and the French and Indian War (Hundred Years’ War, etc.).

But in a story that somewhat reminds us of The Count of Monte Cristo, you get betrayed and imprisoned, ultimately going from high-ranking official and soon-to-be wed to imprisoned, tarnished, and ruined.

You then join some sort of rebellion against Britain; therefore, you become an enemy of the country you once fought for.

The gameplay itself is very much like Assassin’s Creed with a little bit of Grand Theft Auto elements snuck in there, suck as the “criminal” level, along with being able to steal other people’s horses.

It’s all quite an intriguing mix of story and gameplay — one that is actually quite enjoyable — but there are some factors that leave it short of ultimate praise.

For one, the gameplay is very repetitive in the whole tapping mechanism; shooting the soldiers is very inconvenient and takes a bit too long in the heat of battle.  Also, the graphics and animations on the iPad 2 aren’t exactly the greatest, as the framerate seems a bit slow, and the player models are very geometric.

Likes

Gameplay: Gameloft is really one of the only companies that manages to create these blockbuster, action-packed games, and it seems to manage to create a slightly different gameplay mechanism in each of its games.  Backstab isn’t any different — what — with its guns, grenades, swords, cannons… the list goes on and on.  While the gameplay does get a bit repetitive—I do wish there were some sort of combo system—it is quite enjoyable and one that shouldn’t disappoint action fans.

Storyline: The storyline really reminds me of Alexandre Dumas’s The Count of Monte Cristo, one book that I enjoyed and still continue to enjoy.  And if I’m not mistaken, this seems to be an original Gameloft game with no real “copied” game that I can think of.  Well props to them for such an intriguing storyline and a game title that fits quite snugly with the entire theme.

Universal: I love universal; even more when Gameloft decides to go universal for no extra cost.  Nothing to lose, so much to gain.

Dislikes

Repetitive: The fighting system in this game could use slightly more depth; there are no different combos and the like, with only one button for sword fighting and one for shooting.

Graphics, Animations, Etc.: I never thought this day would come: the day I bash on Gameloft’s graphics.  Well here I am, looking at Backstab, and sitting in utter disbelief at how terrible the character models, animations, and graphics are.  Ok, maybe not terrible.  But definitely not up to par with the graphics of games such as Aralon or Nova; heck, not even up to par with Modern Combat: Sandstorm.  The framerate on the iPad 2 also seems less than ideal — maybe around 20 fps at times — and it all just seems quite out of character for Gameloft.

The graphics and animations aren’t so horrendous that it ruins the gameplay, but it could use some improvement.  And it is definitely not on par with Gameloft’s previous games.

Backstab is an enjoyable, action-packed game that I don’t think will disappoint many in terms of gameplay and storyline.  All of it is intriguing, interesting, and enjoyable; there’s nothing like it on the App Store.  It is a little repetitive though, and the graphics and animations really keep it back from being named one of the best on the App Store.  The performance isn’t really up to par either.  But all in all, Backstab is a solid game that is enough to keep you busy for more than a few hours.

Backstab was developed by Gameloft, and I played through version 1.0 on my iPad 2.  The price is $6.99.


Fast Five Receives Gameplay Trailer, Out April 28th

If you’ve been amped up about Fast Five, then you’l surely be excited for its release on the iOS on April 28th.

The trailer shows the game running on the iPad as you play Brian O’ Connor, racking up as many elite cars as possible.

The trailer details that Fast Five the Game will include local and online multiplayer for up to 10 players, one of the largest pool of players I’ve seen so far for an iOS game.

While there aren’t many details other than the part about the multiplayer, we’re definitely excited to get our hands on this one.  We’ve embedded the trailer below for your viewing pleasure, and be sure to get your game face on starting April 28th.

Gangstar Miami Vindication Review: The First Great iOS Sandbox Game

I remember waiting for Gameloft to release the first Gangstar episode (Gangstar: West Coast Hustle), but I found the game to be a little ahead of its time on the iOS platform.  This was evidenced by the very short draw distances and the overall lack of a very important factor, fun.  Well, I have good news for those of you that felt the same.  I have had a chance to play through nearly all of Gangstar: Miami Vindication, and I find it to be everything that Gangstar: West Coast Hustle was, but it has improved graphics and is a lot more FUN!

In a lot of ways, Gangstar: Miami Vindication reminds me of the fun I had playing GTA: Vice City.  It has a decent (although stereotypical) storyline, and the missions are varied enough to keep almost any gamer entertained for hours.  To get to the point, Gangstar: Miami Vindication is now one of my top three most played games on my iPhone.

Likes

Gameplay: This is the first ‘Like’ I look for in any game.  Is it fun?  Does it keep me engaged?  The answer is a resounding yes to both questions.  Gangstar: Miami Vindication has varied missions (and a lot of them) as well as a fun, lively city.  The first Gangstar seemed a little weak on that front, but this episode of Gangstar makes up for that and then some.

Cars: I have read complaints about the driving controls, but I do not have that problem myself.  There are three schemes total (accelerometer, a wheel, and a bar), and if you can’t find one that works for you, then you should probably practice.  I prefer the wheel driving control, and I really like that Gameloft programmed the cars to remain aligned to the road.  The biggest thing they got right: driving is fun.  I love the physics of driving and find myself taking a motorcycle or race car on a spin just for fun.  You can slide around all over the place with a remarkable amount of precision.

Price: For a game with this depth, I think $6.99 is a steal.  Most $3-$6 games on the app store don’t have nearly as much content.  There are a variety of missions, side-missions, races, and achievements.  If that isn’t enough for you, then you can also roam freely and wreak havoc on the city of Miami.

Dislikes

Glitches: I read one review that claimed Gangstar: Miami Vindication was ‘too big for itself,’ and I see where they were coming from.  There are occasional glitches that pop up throughout the game.  Sometimes the voice-overs may cut out, or text may appear that doesn’t belong, or a texture may randomly change.  While these glitches are not common, they are more prevalent than I would like.  I would like to see Gameloft polish the next rendition a little more.

‘King Factor’: Gangstar (both episodes) still lacks one major element that I look for in a sandbox game: you never really achieve taking over the city.  That is one of the most fun parts of any sandbox game.  As you progress, you own more properties and slowly take over the city.  I don’t feel that Gangstar leaves the player with the same feeling.  If you could collect properties and store cars, the game would be even better than it is.

Gangstar: Miami Vindication is a fantastic sandbox game and is one of my most played iPhone games.  I would recommend it to any fan of sandbox games.  More than that, I would recommend it to any fan of games in general.  One warning; the game does have mature content, so it is not for kids!  This is the first sandbox game that I have rated a ‘Must Have.’  I hope you enjoy it as much as me!

Gangstar: Miami Vindication was developed by Gameloft, and I played through version 1.0.0 on my iPhone 4. The price is $5.99.




New Interactive Trailer for ‘Rainbow Six: Shadow Vanguard’ Released

Gameloft has released some new goodies for its upcoming first-person shooter Rainbow Six: Shadow Vanguard, one of the first squad-based FPSs I have seen on the App Store.

There will be five death match maps, including Brazil, Construction Site, Ship, Dam, and Embassy, and the game is slated for a March 17th release.  They’ve also uploaded an interactive trailer, if you wish to partake, in which you travel through a Rainbow Six level based on the decisions you make.  We’re definitely looking forward to getting our hands on this one, and we’ll post more information as they become available.

For now, why don’t you try out that interactive trailer?

Gameloft to Develop Four New Games Using Unreal Engine 3

The following is an official press release from Gameloft:

‘Gameloft, the leading developer and publisher of digital and online games, announced today a long-term, multi-platform licensing agreement with Epic Games, Inc. that enables Gameloft to incorporate Unreal Engine 3 in four new games, two to be released in 2011 and two in 2012.

“Gameloft is very pleased to partner with Epic, especially with their ability to stay ahead of the curve and continually place the best game engine technology in developers’ hands at any given point in time,” said Julien Fournials, vice president of production, Gameloft. “Using Unreal Engine 3 allows us to push game visuals with remarkable lighting and high-fidelity environments. We are confident that players will enjoy the games powered by Unreal Engine 3.”

“There is no doubt that the four games running on Unreal Engine 3 will be visually stunning and take advantage of the powerful mobile gaming devices,” said Mark Rein, vice president, Epic Games. “We are thrilled to provide our technology to Gameloft and look forward to a lasting collaboration.”

Under the agreement, Gameloft plans to release games on multiple mobile and downloadable platforms, including iOS, Android, PlayStation®Network and set-top boxes.’

While this is one of those stories where the headline encapsulates nearly everything we know at this point about the projects in question, the news is exciting nonetheless.  With Gameloft, one of the most prolific developers for the iOS platform, adopting one of the most sophisticated game engines able to run on the hardware, the results are sure to be graphically impressive at the very least.

We here at No DPad will be sure to keep you informed as more details surface regarding these upcoming projects.