Infinity Blade II

Infinity Blade II

Step into the legend again and defeat a host of new monsters

If you’re a big fan of iPad games, then you will almost certainly have heard about Infinity Blade after its launch at the end of 2010. If not, however, here’s a little breakdown; you took on the role of a knight, fighting his way through a castle full of monsters and other enemies. You needed to upgrade your weapon, armour, magical ring, shield and helmet as you fought your way to ultimately face the dark lord at the top of the castle’s tower. When you died, you returned to the start of the castle, only 20 years later, in the next ‘bloodline’ of the knight, with the same armour and weapons. As you became more and more powerful, you could finally defeat the dark lord and claim the Infinity Blade, a mystical blade of unknown power.

The second game takes place shortly after the first; you are the same knight, now with the Infinity Blade in your hand. This time, you learn a little more about the main character – who we discover is named Siris – and while we don’t want to spoil the story for you, there’s certainly enough here to make you want to battle through to the end.

The gameplay of Infinity Blade has changed little since the first title, with the basis still being in swiping your finger across the screen to swing your sword. You parry, block or dodge to defend, and cast magical spells to heal yourself or blast your enemy.

There have been some additions, however. First of all, there’s now a choice between blades; stick with the sword-and-shield combination from the first game, wield two blades, or one large, two-handed sword. The larger sword renders you limited to a defence of blocking only, while the smaller blades necessitate dodging as your primary option. This change means you have more choice, so you can find a set-up that matches your fighting style, which will subsequently alter the type of magical blast that builds up as you fight. It’s a great addition, although once you find a set-up you like, it’s unlikely you’ll try the other options unless you really want to get everything you physically can from the app.

Another addition is the ability to add gems to your weapons and other items, which allows you to add elemental effects to your attacks, or increase the likelihood that you will win cash or items when you defeat a foe depending on the jewel you choose. You will find these gems, along with extra equipment and other spoils, in chests dotted around the game world and the in-game shop. Chests are not always open, and may require a key to open, which can be found – or bought – in the shop.

This has also been overhauled, with a new system for buying items, and a prize wheel which offers a pricey gamble that may bag you a powerful weapon, but may also get you something much worse. You can no longer sell mastered items in the shop either, so scouring the game world for the little bags of money dotted around is all the more important.

This is all great fun, and the game plays just as well as the first. The graphics this time don’t have the same wow-factor, but they are certainly an improvement, with improved lighting and even better textures making everything look great. The game is longer, too, and it will take many hours to get through the full story. Ultimately, however, this game is a sequel; if you didn’t like the first, you certainly won’t like this, and even if you did you may be turned off by the repetitive nature. Still, there’s a lot more to do in Infinity Blade II, and with the inevitable updates over the next few months, this more than lives up to the reputation of the original.

Rated 4 out of 5

Adds plenty of features, but remains familiar. A really playable game that looks incredible and lasts for ages.