630739_largerDrastically altering a successful franchise can often backfire in a major way -- especially in the realm of established games with proven formulas. But a certain staleness and a sense of comfort can be just as damaging, with the finished product resulting in something that doesn't take any substantial risks at all. League of Evil 3 [$1.99] plays it far too safe, but if you're not a fan of change you'll feel right at home.

Just like its predecessors, League of Evil 3 is an action platformer through and through. As usual, you'll use some combination of jumping, double-jumping, air dashing, and wall climbing to  make your way to the end of each stage and reach your end goal -- punching an evil scientist in the face so they explode. As an optional objective you can grab a hidden briefcase in each stage, but when you distill the game to its core, it's all about making your way through a giant maze of traps to the finish line.

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80 stages lie in wait to take your sanity in League of Evil 3, and they're a bit more difficult this time around. As a seasoned fan of platformers both touch and non-touch oriented, I have to say that Ravenous Games really brings the challenge this time around -- so much so that it easily tops the first two iterations by a mile. For instance, there are a ton of deviously placed sawblades at just the right parts to really screw you over -- often times on the floor and ceiling right after leaping over a bed of spikes.

Of course outside of the new layouts, everything operates mechanically just like the first two games. In fact, League 3 even looks exactly the same as the second visually, and if you were to place the two apps side by side it would be almost impossible to tell them apart. You also aren't really getting anything new this time around in terms of modes, or drastically different characters, as the developer is content with leaving you with costumes and replays (with sharing) as the only extras.

Despite the sameness that you'll inevitably experience, I have to say I was loving the challenge every minute, and the level designs are so well done that I was influenced to keep going until I got it right (and don't even get me started on the thrill of playing the five "Impossible" missions). An optional "auto-retry" feature helps ease the pain of the myriad of deaths you'll no doubt go through death after death.

I can't stress enough that League of Evil 3 easily could have been an in-app-purchase set of levels for League of Evil 2, and not a full release. But with the added challenge and the fact that the new stages are actually pretty good, League fans will find more of what they want yet again with the conclusion of this classic touch platformer trilogy.

TouchArcade Rating

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  • fdmstryct

    4.5 stars, at least.

    • shadax

      Meh.

      It's a polished game, but there just isn't much going on to keep me interested. I play four or five levels and I'm done for the day with it.

      I'd say 4 stars at most, and that's a stretch. But to each their own.

  • loophole

    Once you've played the original you pretty much have played the whole series

    • Nathan Bael

      Same could be said for MegaMan, but I still liked them.

      • tex32

        Agree, but just wish LOE 3 would have done more to differentiate itself. Maybe a new mode, multiplayer, something. Even the levels look almost exactly the same expect for a different background. With Mega Man, the enemies, terrain, weapons, obstacles, and bosses change, providing enough variety to keep you coming back for more.

      • Bool Zero

        I disagree with that blanket statement. Looking at Mega Man as your example, and then looking at its consecutive sequels you can see the progression and improvements built upon the formula that are noticeable, discernible in gameplay, level design, controls and gameplay element implementations. The general overall thesis may be the same, but you can't tell me that Mega Man 1 plays, looks and feels exactly like Mega Man 10. There is a sense of progression in the franchise and notable improvement, even though it may wear the retro stylings like a badge of honor, the gameplay and level design is in no way "tow the line".

      • shadax

        If you actually played mega man you would not be making that statement.

        I mean, seriously? Mega man spanned across multiple console generations and got better and better each time. LoE is fun, but it can all be squished into one game, albeit a long one, but it would never change through out.

  • philadendron

    You didn't experience any weird hit detection between the walls and your player? Sometimes I'll be balancing on a ledge, yet my character looks like he's on nothing but thin air. Or I'll bump my head on a corner of a level, but it appears I should be able to jump past that corner, based on my current trajectory. Nitpicky? Yes, but this entire series and genre of games hangs its hat on being nitpicky.

    Also, maybe I'm an aberration, but I have not received achievements that I've fairly earned. And in a game like this, it's frustrating.

    Still, it's obviously a quality game and I've spent 10-11 hours on it, so they've done something right. Your star rating seems pretty spot-on. A patch could push the rating even higher.

  • deepblueocean84

    My thoughts on how to spike up League so it's not so typical.
    -They should let you play as a raptor with a machete, an unhappy sloth with a rifle, or Paula Deen with a butter stick.
    -Add some new stages like a Walmart atmosphere, a health hazardous water park, and lastly a retirement home.
    -For a bonus stage add the dreaded weekly physics style puzzler that I dread seeing in the App Stores new release section, everybody seems to love them puzzle apps. Obviously make the typical physics game with a League feel.
    -Just some ideas to add some life into the game.

  • Deixa

    This game was too hard. Completed it but took many attempts. Also the costumes never worked. Had the same outfit throughout the whole game

  • SinisterSteve

    I really liked this game just because of its ridiculous difficulty. I don't think they made it an add on because only LOE2 users would be able to get it. This way 3 is accessible to anyone.

  • fransoccer

    Call of duty is the same stuff every year and it gets high ratings, just cause this game is the same doesn't mean it should get bad reviews, it's a new game with new levels and the same fun experience

    • Ollivar Frank

      The CoD games are part of a franchise. The developers can't just do a complete overhaul with each installment. The games are really different also. I found my self wishing for the features found in other CoD games after playing one (ie Pick-10, scorestreaks, or some weapons and equipment).

  • Xissoric

    So boooooring. Tried this game and was bored after 5 levels, don't buy if you've played any of the others in the series, they just keep doing the same thing over and over again.

  • Himanshu Modi

    I have been craving for more levels ever since I finished LoE2, and that's what LoE3 delivers. The star rating for this game should be as much as LoE1 and 2. because, really this game is better in the sense of being challenging. The impossible levels this time round can actually claim to be impossible. Only thing that I didn't like was not having a boss fight. That's an area where LoE2 could have been improved. On a side note. Some bugs need hammering out in this game. Hope they do it soon.

  • ngajoe

    I always though the game was derivative and uninteresting from the first, but to each his own.

  • onyx77

    Its funny how the overall feeling of this game can be looked at. On one hand the game was loved by many and when the many got more of what they loved they turned against it somewhat. On the other hand, I get the sense from reading all of the comments and taking them as a whole (trying to see the forest from the trees), that more of the same with an added twist is what everyone really wanted to see. I think it is still loved by all but under delivered in that spark factor that gives it the renewed love that has made other game releases successful. Take Mario bros for example. The first was great, the second deviated but certainly added new components. The 3rd game back to roots but with serious additions which may make it best of all time. Mikey shorts nailed that formula with the second version containing a whole new component which added a must purchase element to it. I've loved the LOE series but agree that I feel that the most recent under delivered in the additions department. I've always asked for a bit more from them but that has been me wishing. I would hate to see this game end here. With such a great canvas and controls its primed to make a comeback with including some more adventurous aspects, abilities, power ups, and maybe even a level editor with share ability component. I do kind of feel let down that the editor never came through even though it has been promised over a year ago

League of Evil 3 Reviewed by Chris Carter on . Rating: 3.5