The planets must have aligned this weekend to allow me the presence of mind to finish an RPG AND a book within 24 hours of each other. So, which do you want to hear about? I’ve got a space-bound spy adventure featuring a kickass team of black ops agents and killer geisha robots, or a sobering examination of the underlying causes of the institutional and economic withering in western society.
So, without further delay, I give you my review of Niall Ferguson’s 2013 book The Great Degeneration.
Nahhh just screwing with you. We’re doing space ops!
Revolution 60, developed by Giant Spacekat, is a Sci Fi RPG that uses quick-time events (finally executed in a way that doesn’t break immersion), real-time spatial combat and decision making throughout its story.
The vibrancy, fun and imagination bring my back to my old PlayStation 2 days, where I was actually excited about games. Revolution 60 has truly some funny moments, as well as some excellent dramatic climaxes, and there isn’t a wasted character in the cast.
I hope that if this game spawns sequels (or spiritual sequels) they offer more dialogue choices. Revolution 60 suffers from Mass Effect’s “Paragon or Renegade” dichotomy, and the there are only two NPCs for whom affinity points can be earned (and it’s a “one or the other” kind of deal). However, this is a cosmetic point, as the current list of variables (professional or rogue, character affinity, character fates, and proficiency in tasks) gives this game 24 possible endings.
I would also like to see a bit more variety in the design of the enemies. Variants on the “Leopard” foot soldier will be your primary enemies throughout this game, with each type having its own set of skills and stats. This, again, is an aesthetic concern, and their similar appearances still make sense within the context of the story.
Nitpicks duly noted, I recommend this game. It looks great, it plays very well and it has a style and character that I find very hard to come by nowadays. I didn’t think it would be so early in my reviews of iOS games that I would be fully satisfied with a game that cost under $10 ($3.99 as of today will get you the full version).
A little aside about price.
The reason why I emphasize the price is that I see the iOS platform as one where indie developers can make a name for themselves with imaginative games offered at a reasonable price. With this, of course, comes the challenge of how to price said games, and this is often where my head meets a desk in frustration.
Some larger publishers remaster classics (over a decade old) and push them for about $15.00 in the App Store. Alternatively, publishers of all sizes have taken to In App Purchases for income, and have the core game available for free. In theory this works (League of Legends, one of the largest multilayer PC games today is fueled by micro transactions, and offers years of entertainment value at a relatively low price). All too often, however, “free to play” iOS games hold you back significantly if you don’t keep authorizing those little $0.99 transactions that tend to build up to something sinister over time (that’s also if you only want the “handfull” of gems/diamonds/gold that magically lets you enjoy yourself; I’ve seen bundles priced up to $99.99). Kim Kardashian’s iOS game (yes it actually exists) caught shit after an 11-year-old spent about $120 on in-app purchases, unbeknownst to his mother (you can read more about that here).
Revolution 60, by contrast, offers a full and compelling game at a fair price. When an iOS game manages that, it is a refreshing feat. I applaud Giant Spacekat for its accomplishment. Still, feel free to bump up the price on future endeavors; you earned it!