24709503We promised to report back once we had more time with Blades of Fury [App Store], Gameloft's newly-released fighting game. We're happy to report, that against all odds, the virtual D-Pad and on-screen controls actually do allow you to pull off some pretty impressive combos filled with special attacks and suprisingly don't seem to hamper the gameplay at all.

The Blades of Fury thread on our forums is filled with people echoing the same uncanny impressions regarding the controls. I'm really not sure what kind of new virtual D-Pad technology Gameloft has pulled out of their R&D department, but between Blades of Fury and Modern Combat: Sandstorm [$6.99] I'm beginning to become a believer in virtual controls.


Gameloft's Official Trailer

The buttons on the bottom right of the screen control your attacks and defenses, you have two types of standard attacks as well as blocking and your special magical attack. Blades of Fury has a cool blocking mechanic in that you can't just keep the block button held down all the time as there is a limited number of times you can block before your armor breaks. The magic attack system is equally cool, and works off a blue meter below your health bar that seems to fill up whenever you take damage or hit your opponent.

This bar fills up in four usable chunks, and depending on how long you hold the magic attack button the more it will use. Tapping the button lets out a low powered special attack that varies for each character. This takes one chunk of the blue bar, holding the button longer eats up two chunks of the blue bar but does more damage, and by holding the button even longer you will use up the entire blue bar but unleash a devastating magical attack.

79217792Each character has a fairly large variety of moves and combos, accessible through the pause screen attack list button and easily perfected in the included practice mode. I didn't have any problem going through the list of moves and memorizing a few combos, which again I found to be very surprising for a game with virtual controls.

There are five difficulty options, ranging from "easy" to "hardest", so players of all skill levels should be able to find some challenge in the game. Easy mode is easy enough that you can win by rolling your iPhone across your face and the hardest mode is just ridiculous. I figured I would give it a try just for the sake of having some frame of reference for the different difficulty settings, and found myself falling victim to these amazing combos unleashed by the AI opponent that had my character juggling through the air powerless to do anything more than get a few hits in before meeting an untimely demise.

If you happen to find yourself administering one of these insane opponent juggling combos, you can also save replays of complete fights. There doesn't seem to be a way to share these replays, but just having the option of recording them is nice. Included in Blades of Fury are many references to their online service Gameloft Live , but no one has been able to successfully log on. There are some statistics in the player profile area of the main menu that detail rankings which I assume have something to do with the currently inaccessible Gameloft Live integration.


[ Full HD version | Low Bandwidth version ]

The graphics in Blades of Fury are great, and the ten different levels in the game are equally awesome. Each fighter has their own arena ranging from evil looking catacombs to even flying on the back of a giant dragon. Similar to most fighting games, the story is lackluster and the voice work can be laughable at times.

79925831If you're a fan of fighting games, Blades of Fury is worth some serious consideration. Gameloft has been on a roll lately both releasing and previewing games that have raised the bar of what to expect on the iPhone, and Blades of Fury fits in great with the rest of their current and upcoming lineup. If you know someone locally who also has the game, you can play over WiFi or bluetooth, a feature I've been unable to test.

But don't just take my word for it, the thread on our forums is filled with people echoing my sentiments. Ayjona, Nizy, Squarezero and several others have also posted detailed accounts of their experiences with the game.

App Store Link: Blades of Fury, $6.99

TouchArcade Rating

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  • Question

    How can people be giving the "same uncanny impressions" I understand the control scheme actually working being uncanny but I think it was poorly worded.

    If everyone is saying the samething how are the impressions uncanny of unique from eachother.

    Not trying to flame just trying to understand this prospective.

    Shouldn't it or rather it should say the same impressions have been given regarding the uncanny control scheme.

    • BoGuS

      Says the guy using "prospective." The word you're looking for is perspective. I won't even touch on the other obvious errors you made that could be chalked up to typos and/or laziness.

  • Question

    How can people be giving the "same uncanny impressions" I understand the control scheme actually working being uncanny but I think it was poorly worded.

    If everyone is saying the samething how are the impressions uncanny of unique from eachother.

    Not trying to flame just trying to understand this prospective.

    Shouldn't it or rather it should say the same impressions have been given regarding the uncanny control scheme.

    • BoGuS

      Says the guy using "prospective." The word you're looking for is perspective. I won't even touch on the other obvious errors you made that could be chalked up to typos and/or laziness.

  • EYEMH8

    "Easy mode is easy enough that you can win by rolling your iPhone across your face"
    best line in a game review ever.

    • Question

      Trying to visualize that but it's not working.

      That like saying my car easier to start than mustard.
      It doesn't make sense.

      Eli usually has way better writing skills...maybe he's working to hard.

      • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

        I'm sorry Question -- are you Eli's English teacher?

      • arta

        Are you stupid? He means on easy mode the AI just stands there most of the time so you can wipe it on your face and still win. Talk about a stupidity backfire.

      • BoGuS

        Don't you mean "working TOO hard" Mr. English/Grammar Nazi?

      • Question

        I typed that only the phone changed it to "to"

      • WeirdingWay

        It's a reference to a popular term called "face-rolling". Log on to the internet more than once in 10 years and you would have understood the reference.

  • EYEMH8

    "Easy mode is easy enough that you can win by rolling your iPhone across your face"
    best line in a game review ever.

    • Question

      Trying to visualize that but it's not working.

      That like saying my car easier to start than mustard.
      It doesn't make sense.

      Eli usually has way better writing skills...maybe he's working to hard.

      • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

        I'm sorry Question -- are you Eli's English teacher?

      • arta

        Are you stupid? He means on easy mode the AI just stands there most of the time so you can wipe it on your face and still win. Talk about a stupidity backfire.

      • BoGuS

        Don't you mean "working TOO hard" Mr. English/Grammar Nazi?

      • Question

        I typed that only the phone changed it to "to"

      • WeirdingWay

        It's a reference to a popular term called "face-rolling". Log on to the internet more than once in 10 years and you would have understood the reference.

  • http://www.wiglingtonandwenks.com fun games for kids

    The graphics are awesome (10 out of 10). But I would rather play this kind of fighting game in a console(ps2/3) or handheld(psp).

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      I wouldn't be so sure (about the handheld part, anyway)...

  • http://www.wiglingtonandwenks.com fun games for kids

    The graphics are awesome (10 out of 10). But I would rather play this kind of fighting game in a console(ps2/3) or handheld(psp).

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      I wouldn't be so sure (about the handheld part, anyway)...

  • NDN Shadow

    Am I the only one who's turned off by all of Gameloft's stuff? They want to be compared to games on the actual game systems though their games never come close. I've had more fun playing games like Harbor Master and Spider than Hero of Sparta for instance.

    • capa's jump

      *yaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwn* and another hater rears its head.

    • SalsaMD

      You walk a lonely road...

    • Jeff

      Me too. Rather have nice 2d art and no lag than some laggy 3d stuff with 'onscreen buttons' as controls. And these 3d stuff heat up my 3g pretty fast too and is pretty hefty on the battery

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      So have I (Spider, anyway -- haven't played Harbor Master). Blade of Fury (and MC:S for that matter) are in a different league altogether from HoS. If you like fighting games, you may want to check this one out.

    • john

      yeah, i liked harbor master too, when it was called flight control

    • Lum's Stormtrooper

      I too prefer stuff which was actually designed for the iPhone's strenghs and weaknesses, and isn't just another poor clone of a PSP title. That said, 3D can work on the iPhone sometimes, - games such as Star Defense are a good mix of small scale 3D with touch controls which really work.

      As for this latest Gameloft clone, I have no interest in it. I do however have Soul Calibur 4 on my 360, which plays great on my arcade stick.

      • http://www.rpg-fanatics.de crishnak

        So what about people who do not want to play casuals on their iPhone/iPod Touch everytime? Who want to sink their teeth into some "hardcore" title? Should those be left beside, because the iPhone wasn´t designed for those titles, lacking actual buttons and a d-pad? I don´t think so...

        And by the way, those on screen controls benefit from the multitouch screen, one of the strengths of the iPhone/iPod Touch.

        It´s a ripoff, so what? It´s been said about a thousend times, but I´ll say it again: If there is an audience for a game like Gangstar or Sandstorm and the original developer won´t bring their franchise to the App Store, someone else will do it and earn the money from users who are eager to play those games.
        Never forget: Gameloft is one of the developers who really put effort into pushing the iPhone/iPod Touch as a portable console. If they weren´t, we´d probably still play Arcanoid, Tetris and Zuma-ripoffs till the end of days.

      • ahamling27

        Kudos to crishnak for calling this guy out. I too bought this game and for a fighter it's pretty damn good. I'd go as far to say it's better than a crappy console 3d fighter....remember the first 3d mortal kombat?

        BTW Gangstar is a blast and rockstar can suck gamelofts um...well you know. At least gameloft is attempting games like these rockstar is just porting a DS GTA and they'll probably charge 10 bucks!

  • NDN Shadow

    Am I the only one who's turned off by all of Gameloft's stuff? They want to be compared to games on the actual game systems though their games never come close. I've had more fun playing games like Harbor Master and Spider than Hero of Sparta for instance.

    • capa's jump

      *yaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwn* and another hater rears its head.

    • SalsaMD

      You walk a lonely road...

    • Jeff

      Me too. Rather have nice 2d art and no lag than some laggy 3d stuff with 'onscreen buttons' as controls. And these 3d stuff heat up my 3g pretty fast too and is pretty hefty on the battery

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      So have I (Spider, anyway -- haven't played Harbor Master). Blade of Fury (and MC:S for that matter) are in a different league altogether from HoS. If you like fighting games, you may want to check this one out.

    • john

      yeah, i liked harbor master too, when it was called flight control

    • Lum's Stormtrooper

      I too prefer stuff which was actually designed for the iPhone's strenghs and weaknesses, and isn't just another poor clone of a PSP title. That said, 3D can work on the iPhone sometimes, - games such as Star Defense are a good mix of small scale 3D with touch controls which really work.

      As for this latest Gameloft clone, I have no interest in it. I do however have Soul Calibur 4 on my 360, which plays great on my arcade stick.

      • http://www.rpg-fanatics.de crishnak

        So what about people who do not want to play casuals on their iPhone/iPod Touch everytime? Who want to sink their teeth into some "hardcore" title? Should those be left beside, because the iPhone wasn´t designed for those titles, lacking actual buttons and a d-pad? I don´t think so...

        And by the way, those on screen controls benefit from the multitouch screen, one of the strengths of the iPhone/iPod Touch.

        It´s a ripoff, so what? It´s been said about a thousend times, but I´ll say it again: If there is an audience for a game like Gangstar or Sandstorm and the original developer won´t bring their franchise to the App Store, someone else will do it and earn the money from users who are eager to play those games.
        Never forget: Gameloft is one of the developers who really put effort into pushing the iPhone/iPod Touch as a portable console. If they weren´t, we´d probably still play Arcanoid, Tetris and Zuma-ripoffs till the end of days.

      • ahamling27

        Kudos to crishnak for calling this guy out. I too bought this game and for a fighter it's pretty damn good. I'd go as far to say it's better than a crappy console 3d fighter....remember the first 3d mortal kombat?

        BTW Gangstar is a blast and rockstar can suck gamelofts um...well you know. At least gameloft is attempting games like these rockstar is just porting a DS GTA and they'll probably charge 10 bucks!

  • Sticktron

    MC:S has identical controls to the other two Gameloft shooters, so no R&D breakthrough there.

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      The breakthrough is not in the kind of control MC:S uses, but how well they actually work compared to those of their two previous shooters.

  • Sticktron

    MC:S has identical controls to the other two Gameloft shooters, so no R&D breakthrough there.

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      The breakthrough is not in the kind of control MC:S uses, but how well they actually work compared to those of their two previous shooters.

  • Eric

    This is actually a sequel to Medieval Combat: Age of Glory, one of Gameloft's older mobile fighting titles, based on the character names. Not that it particularly matters, but that was a pretty solid game, so it isn't too surprising that this turned out good as well.

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      That's good to know -- thanks, Eric.

  • Eric

    This is actually a sequel to Medieval Combat: Age of Glory, one of Gameloft's older mobile fighting titles, based on the character names. Not that it particularly matters, but that was a pretty solid game, so it isn't too surprising that this turned out good as well.

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      That's good to know -- thanks, Eric.

  • Ayjona

    /echoing reviewer's sentiments again, for god measure.

  • Ayjona

    /echoing reviewer's sentiments again, for god measure.

  • http://templescene.com Mr Skills

    In the first video, the female character sounds like Phoebe from Friends...

  • http://templescene.com Mr Skills

    In the first video, the female character sounds like Phoebe from Friends...

  • dissaster

    Ok, i can say im a figthing games pro i played dozens of them on all platforms from neo-geo, cps2 to ps3.

    So about the game, graphics are nice but i bet iphone can pull out more especially since the backgrounds aren't anything special and figthing games usally look better then other titles on the same platform due to lower overall polygon usage (aka character models could be a bit better). (9/10)

    Controls are superb, really intuitive and i found it to perform hardcore combos then on many joysticks ive used over the years, gameloft did really great job here (dpad) 10/10

    It took me about 15-20 mins to complete the game for the first time, normal difficulty is evidently too easy i had "perfect" for most of battles and i've seen no purpose in using block... Diablo was little more challanging then others, he even almost won 1st round, still i have to try the game on harder level. (6/10)

    Ok, ill stop whining here atleast we got real and decent figthing game for iphone! Atleast...

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      There's five difficulty levels, three of them harder than normal. You should be able to find a setting to match your level of badassery...

  • dissaster

    Ok, i can say im a figthing games pro i played dozens of them on all platforms from neo-geo, cps2 to ps3.

    So about the game, graphics are nice but i bet iphone can pull out more especially since the backgrounds aren't anything special and figthing games usally look better then other titles on the same platform due to lower overall polygon usage (aka character models could be a bit better). (9/10)

    Controls are superb, really intuitive and i found it to perform hardcore combos then on many joysticks ive used over the years, gameloft did really great job here (dpad) 10/10

    It took me about 15-20 mins to complete the game for the first time, normal difficulty is evidently too easy i had "perfect" for most of battles and i've seen no purpose in using block... Diablo was little more challanging then others, he even almost won 1st round, still i have to try the game on harder level. (6/10)

    Ok, ill stop whining here atleast we got real and decent figthing game for iphone! Atleast...

    • http://www.squarezerostudio.com squarezero

      There's five difficulty levels, three of them harder than normal. You should be able to find a setting to match your level of badassery...

  • differenz

    yep. Gameloft actually got few more points in my book after the last few games I've seen, downloaded and played. While they (as someone mentioned above) are trying to make games that remind people of some other games on other platforms (GTA, Soulcalibur etc..) they do a good job at it.

    after all.. half a year ago we only had some lo-fi games running on iPhone and we were satisfied with that. but now that we have seen the real power of our little portable "console", we (naturally) want more.

    Here's what happened to me when I came to toucharcade last night and saw the Blades of Fury news. I instantly went to appstore and buyed the game with one click. Usually I do a bit of research, watch some gameplay, some screenshots, read some reviews because I don't want to spend $ for bad games.. but this time I just went forward and bought it because it looked so good.

    I'm still waiting for some friends to buy it so I can play some multiplayer, which is the biggest ace of this game.

    In my experience, just skip "normal" gameplay level and go to "hard".

  • differenz

    yep. Gameloft actually got few more points in my book after the last few games I've seen, downloaded and played. While they (as someone mentioned above) are trying to make games that remind people of some other games on other platforms (GTA, Soulcalibur etc..) they do a good job at it.

    after all.. half a year ago we only had some lo-fi games running on iPhone and we were satisfied with that. but now that we have seen the real power of our little portable "console", we (naturally) want more.

    Here's what happened to me when I came to toucharcade last night and saw the Blades of Fury news. I instantly went to appstore and buyed the game with one click. Usually I do a bit of research, watch some gameplay, some screenshots, read some reviews because I don't want to spend $ for bad games.. but this time I just went forward and bought it because it looked so good.

    I'm still waiting for some friends to buy it so I can play some multiplayer, which is the biggest ace of this game.

    In my experience, just skip "normal" gameplay level and go to "hard".

  • dissaster

    Gameloft makes decent ripoffs indeed, and frankly i hate to see if someone whines that they make ripoffs cuz thatsn all we have. I wonder when we will see some real deal from namco instead of bust a move...

    Let's just hope that gameloft will make a lot of cheese on their games and other, bigger studios will notice our platform.

    (wtf is eidos i want Tomb Raider asap :P)

    Btw guys have you ever though why we still dont have Prince of Persia from gameloft? Its their flagship after all i bet they are doing something about it.

    • http://www.rpg-fanatics.de crishnak

      I actually thought of Tomb Raider, when playing Gamelofts Assassins Creed. Eidos should hire them for doing the port. Right, now they´re the best in terms of controls and graphics.

  • dissaster

    Gameloft makes decent ripoffs indeed, and frankly i hate to see if someone whines that they make ripoffs cuz thatsn all we have. I wonder when we will see some real deal from namco instead of bust a move...

    Let's just hope that gameloft will make a lot of cheese on their games and other, bigger studios will notice our platform.

    (wtf is eidos i want Tomb Raider asap :P)

    Btw guys have you ever though why we still dont have Prince of Persia from gameloft? Its their flagship after all i bet they are doing something about it.

    • http://www.rpg-fanatics.de crishnak

      I actually thought of Tomb Raider, when playing Gamelofts Assassins Creed. Eidos should hire them for doing the port. Right, now they´re the best in terms of controls and graphics.

  • differenz

    I reckon the buzz about the iPhone platform is already out there. Recently we had some Rockstar news about GTA: Chinatown Wars being ported (hopefully that PSP version not the top down view from DS one) and so on.

    I've read somewhere that EA made a special office/studio/team that will work only on iPhone games..

    Either way, I think that the period in front of us is going to be pretty darn interesting in the gameplay world. I'm just waiting the day the gamespot.com adds another tab on the main menu (...PSP, DS, iPhone..). Once that happens, it's official - gaming world is changing once again.

  • differenz

    I reckon the buzz about the iPhone platform is already out there. Recently we had some Rockstar news about GTA: Chinatown Wars being ported (hopefully that PSP version not the top down view from DS one) and so on.

    I've read somewhere that EA made a special office/studio/team that will work only on iPhone games..

    Either way, I think that the period in front of us is going to be pretty darn interesting in the gameplay world. I'm just waiting the day the gamespot.com adds another tab on the main menu (...PSP, DS, iPhone..). Once that happens, it's official - gaming world is changing once again.

  • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tomchap

    Im hoping Streetfighter 2 makes an appearance.

    That would be great.

    The control scheme used by Gameloft really is good and I hope other developers take note.

    • spiffyone

      Eh...there's a sizable enough difference between 2D and 3D fighters even when ignoring the graphics. Things like buffers, hit zones, animation cycles, cancels, etc. are very different to the point where while the implementation of this game's virtual dpad is stellar I think it would have to be re-optimized for a 2D fighting game.

  • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tomchap

    Im hoping Streetfighter 2 makes an appearance.

    That would be great.

    The control scheme used by Gameloft really is good and I hope other developers take note.

    • spiffyone

      Eh...there's a sizable enough difference between 2D and 3D fighters even when ignoring the graphics. Things like buffers, hit zones, animation cycles, cancels, etc. are very different to the point where while the implementation of this game's virtual dpad is stellar I think it would have to be re-optimized for a 2D fighting game.

  • http://Smouch.net/lol Fazzy

    The title of this article is fail. There's Funky Punch. That came first.

  • http://Smouch.net/lol Fazzy

    The title of this article is fail. There's Funky Punch. That came first.

  • BearKila

    Guys, I am usually a Gameloft hater, however, I do find this particular title to be quite entertaining. Though Namco is releasing Tekken and Soul Caliber for the iphone, I think Blades of Fury is the perfect title to help with the wait.
    http://kotaku.com/5328749/namco-eyes-tekken-soulcalibur-as-it-expands-iphone-development

  • BearKila

    Guys, I am usually a Gameloft hater, however, I do find this particular title to be quite entertaining. Though Namco is releasing Tekken and Soul Caliber for the iphone, I think Blades of Fury is the perfect title to help with the wait.
    http://kotaku.com/5328749/namco-eyes-tekken-soulcalibur-as-it-expands-iphone-development

  • dissaster

    "Wondering why Apple chose to add a camera to the iPod nano, but not the revised iPod touch? You're not alone, but one Mr. Steven P. Jobs has an answer for you: it's because the touch is a game machine, you see. Seriously -- that's what El Steve told the inimitable David Pogue today after the Rock and Roll event." --- Jobs made it clear yesterday that iphone is a gaming rig :) i hope devs heard that aswell :)

    SC and Tekken are far from beeing confirmed dude... I bet we will see dozens of pacman mutations before tekken.

  • dissaster

    "Wondering why Apple chose to add a camera to the iPod nano, but not the revised iPod touch? You're not alone, but one Mr. Steven P. Jobs has an answer for you: it's because the touch is a game machine, you see. Seriously -- that's what El Steve told the inimitable David Pogue today after the Rock and Roll event." --- Jobs made it clear yesterday that iphone is a gaming rig :) i hope devs heard that aswell :)

    SC and Tekken are far from beeing confirmed dude... I bet we will see dozens of pacman mutations before tekken.

  • Sean

    Hmm, Toto called they want their Dune theme tune back! :P

  • Sean

    Hmm, Toto called they want their Dune theme tune back! :P