Gurk III review (iPhone / iPod Touch)

August 14, 2013

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10 word description: 8-bit style party based RPG. Classes, quests, levelling. Turn-based combat.

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10 word review: Completely unoptimised interface, antiquated visuals and grinding. Therefore quite fun.

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You will like this if you enjoy: Very retro RPGs with much of the gameplay and progression based around random encounters and the exploiting thereof.

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The good news: Dispensing with pretensions, or even any attempt to make use of the iPhone screen, it does what it sets out to do. Although the interface looks clunky, like a port from a much older phone, navigating it and doing what you need to do is a breeze. Everything – heroes, items, enemies – has a decent, well written description.

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The bad news: There’s enough about this game – looks, interface style, repetitive encounters – to put off anyone who isn’t already a retro RPG fanatic.

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Arcadelife verdict: If you thought Kairosoft couldn’t be bothered with the interface for Game Dev Story, you’re going to have the same immediate emotional reaction to this game. The critical issue is this: does the game offer enough in the way of entertainment to make the lacklustre interface irrelevant? I’m going to perch precariously on the fence here, as I usually tend to do, and say that this depends very heavily on how much of a fan you are of this kind of RPG. It isn’t an action RPG, although there are lots of fights, and it doesn’t have the deepest levelling process ever, auto-allocating stat increases for each member of your party.

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Ultimately, I’m not going to put off anyone who likes this kind of game, because they will like this game. Trying to encourage someone who hates retro turn-based RPGs to buy it would be a complete waste of time. At this point, you’re probably wondering why I bothered in the first place. There’s the answer. You read it, you filled a few minutes of your day. All I can hope is that you enjoyed reading it enough to come back again some time.

Arcadelife rating

Presentation – 6/10
Visuals – 7/10
Controls – 8/10
Content – 8.5/10
Fun – 6.5/10
Final rating – 6/10


Rating categories explained here.
Version reviewed by Arcadelife is 1.0
iTunes link

Larva Labs website link

Arcadelife played and reviewed this game on:
5th gen iPod Touch (iOS 6.1.3)
This review was typed on a Das Keyboard Model S mechanical keyboard – check them out, they’re really rather groovy.

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