The Dark Knight Rises (universal) is the latest blockbuster tie-in from Gameloft, who already have games for Men in Black III and The Amazing Spider-Man under their belts this summer. But unlike those two titles, The Dark Knight Rises really captures the tone of the film, a gritty, storm-filled portrayal of a Gotham City under crisis.
From the moment the game begins, it strives to capture the cinematic feel of the film in ways the Spider-Man game didn’t even bother. Rises doesn’t have the voices of Christian Bale, Morgan Freeman, etc. but the moody dialogue is much better than the average voice-acting experience. It’s not Oscar-worthy, but the voiceovers manage to capture some of the game’s atmosphere, enhanced by the fantastic soundtrack playing in the background.
As a sandbox action adventure, players glide and grapple hook across the buildings of Gotham City, looking for missions and thugs to take out. Cut-scenes introduce each mission and follow throughout, adding some story to the game without taking players out of the game’s action segments.
And that’s where The Dark Knight Rises really shines: there’s no feeling like jumping off the side of a building, opening the big black cape, and floating down towards the ground – and in a cool little touch, the game keeps track of gliding distance for record purchases. Players can even open up vehicles like the Batpod as they progress to the game, giving the world a much more open and varied feel that isn’t as open-world as Grand Theft Auto or anything, but much more interesting than other movie-tie ins with open worlds.
The game also looks as good as it plays and sounds – particularly the slow-motion fighting animations, which are as intricate as those found in the awesome Batman console games. There aren’t a ton of fighting animations, but the ability to counter attack, do silent takedowns, and utilize gadgets like Batarands to disarm bad guys gives players a ton of butt-kicking options s the Caped Crusader. There are times where the camera can be a bit awkward, but players have control over it, so these problems are easily alleviated.
The Dark Knight Rises is the best game based on a blockbuster movie there is on the platform. It’s a lengthy adventure, full of upgrades, puzzle mini-games to solve, and a whole lot of fist-flying action and drama – in other words, a perfect companion for fans of the film or adventure games, and anyone looking for a showcase action game for their iOS device.