Bastion (iPad) by Supergiant Games was recommended to me by a friend before I even noticed it in the App Store. It was a huge success on the Xbox Live Arcade, but there were no indications that it was being brought to iOS until it just showed up a couple of weeks ago. I immediately started playing and very quickly several hours passed, making one thing clear: this is easily one of the best games to hit the iPad this year.
Bastion is an immersive action RPG, complete with upgradable skills and weapons, and the dynamic environments are eye candy for serious and casual gamers alike. The combat system is engaging yet intuitive, and the sound and reactive narration is nothing short of the best available in the App Store.
The story line, character development and narration is something not often seen in games on mobile devices, but Bastion goes so far above and beyond, I hate to even attempt to describe it at risk of ruining it for anyone that plays it.
Gamers play though as “The Kid” whose journey is narrated by “The Stranger”, who makes hundreds of unique comments throughout the game. The Calamity – the event that all but destroyed Caelondia – has left The Kid in a tattered version of the world he once knew, but with the guidance of The Stranger, sets out to collect fragments of The Core to rebuild the Bastion.
Gamers who have previously played Bastion on the Xbox will find the complete game in the iPad addition with a couple of small changes: a new aspect ratio (4:3 versus 16:9), retina-enabled graphics, and a new control system that works beautifully in the touch environment. While those that have played Bastion on the Xbox may prefer the classic control screen, first-time Bastion players will definitely feel at home with the updated tap-to-move controls for the iPad.
The dynamically generated graphics are a visual buffet for the eyes, and the reactive narration and superb soundtrack ties everything together – and Supergiant Games has also added in Game Center achievements and leaderboards to top off the package. Bastion is everything that an iPad port should be, and at the price point of $4.99, worth every penny.