New from Gamevil, developers of the popular RPGs Zenonia 2 [$2.99/Lite], Hybrid 2 [$2.99/Lite], and even the RPG-ish Baseball Superstars 2011 [$4.99/Lite], comes another entry into the role-playing game genre called Illusia [$4.99]. Illusia is less of a traditional RPG and more of an action-RPG/platformer hybrid. You'll run, jump, and attack through side-scrolling levels filled with monsters over the course of the 7 worlds in the game. Illusia has a very colorful and cute art style, and a fairly interesting (if a little cliché) storyline. But due to the repetitious quests and level grinding, it will really only appeal to a niche group of players, mainly those who enjoy leveling up and equipping their character with the ridiculous amount of items in the game. If that is your thing though, Illusia really excels in this area.
You start out in Illusia by choosing to play as one of two different classes, a fighter or a magician. That may not sound like much, but each class can be customized to a pretty ridiculous degree through the course of the game, so it's not much of an issue. The majority of quests are simple kill X amount of enemies or fetch X amount of items, and they all start to blend together after a while. It works though because it's simply a means to level up and unlock equipment to outfit your character with, and the amount of items available provide a ton of customization options. There is also a number of IAP extras that you can buy in the game that allow you to trick out your character even more, and an interesting online auction system lets you buy or sell items with other players around the world.
One thing I did not like about Illusia was the onscreen controls. They are large and obscuring, and not very responsive. However I soon discovered that you can customize the size, positioning, and opacity of them and things improved considerably, though they can still be unresponsive at times. Luckily the action in the game is casual enough that this never really hinders your enjoyment. Another issue related to this is the haphazard touch screen support in menus. Some menu items and popup windows allow you to simply tap a button to proceed, but some of them require you to navigate using the virtual controls. Again, it's not a game ruining problem, but it can be pretty annoying.
If building up a character as you see fit while blasting through some Mario-style levels sounds like a good time, then you'll likely enjoy Illusia. I've been having a good time playing through the game, and plenty of players are enjoying it in our forums, but it is starting to feel a little too repetitious for my liking. The sheer amount of items in the game is really impressive, and the graphics and story are entertaining enough to hold your interest. Once you've completed the game, there's a special hard mode that provides a nice challenge as you take your leveled up character through the game again. In the end, Illusia doesn't do anything particularly mind blowing, but the gameplay is solid and it will keep you occupied for quite some time.
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