Emberwind HD review (iPad)

August 10, 2011

“I’m a firestarter, terrific firestarter”

Remember to click the images to view the full resolution iPad screens. Particularly for this game as it is so pretty!

10 word description: Non-stop goblin smashing mayhem over a huge campaign. (Taken from the app store description)

This is where it starts. I jumped into the water so that you can see the splashing effect. It reminded me of Metal Slug, as did many other moments in this game...

10 word review: Absolutely brilliant game. All-action explore-em-up iPad classic. (Yes, I know it’s a PC port. I had TEN words, ok?)

The map, just after beating the first boss. Even this map is a subtly animated work of art - for example, the invading warships (top left) are bombarding the coastal town.

You will like this if you enjoy: Playing superb platform games on your iPad. There are similar games, but they are not really in the same league as this – Frogatto, Terava, Lars, Giana Sisters…

Find magic wells and interact with them to shower yourself with tons of loot

The good news: Where shall we start? It’s one of the best games I’ve played on an iPad, easily the best platform game. Beautiful looks, highly entertaining action-based exploring gameplay that appears to have been honed to perfection using a team of very critical testers. The controls, well, I’ve read that some people don’t get on with them but I couldn’t find anything wrong. Change them in the options if you like. Even the music and sounds are great.

Many levels contain smaller subterranean zones full of enemies, loot chests and optimal jump trajectories marked out with acorns

The bad news: No Game Center, but who really cares? It’s not a competitive high-scoring game anyway, although there is a score and you can revisit previous levels to improve it. The real bad news here is that you’re going to have to wait a very long time for anyone to come close to matching this for fun, playability, polish and sheer class.

If you do enough magic mushrooms, you will occasionally see tiny, helpful mythical creatures who will temporarily bestow various attack power-ups upon you. There are similar creatures in this game.

Arcadelife verdict: They wouldn’t let me use this in my iTunes review, but this is my site so I can say what I like: Fucking Brilliant. There you go.

On some levels you have to clear houses of goblins. Others require you to activate ponderous war-machines such as this large mortar

Seriously, this game is like a triple-distilled combination of Castlevania, Metal Slug, maybe a small teaspoon of Sonic The Hedgehog and loads of mental flashbacks of all the best action platformers from the 16-bit (SNES & Megadrive/Genesis) era. At times it seems like the developers had a contest to see how much chaotic craziness they could fill the screen with and it’s a rather jaw-dropping achievement that they managed to keep the iPad framerate consistently high at all times.

Chain enough hits together and you will unleash this super-mega swirling attack of doom

Significantly, all the time I have spent with this game I have totally enjoyed playing it and, when I’m not playing it, I start thinking about it and wish I was. I hardly ever say this, in fact I never say it: go and buy Emberwind HD, it’s really very, very good.

Arcadelife rating: 97/100


Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.0
iTunes link

Chillingo / Emberwind website link

Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
iPad (OS 4.3.5)

One comment

  1. […] pet, minimum number of jumps) and there’s no time limit – hurray! (If you get this and Emberwind, you probably won’t need another platform game for quite a while). One of the goals on each […]

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