Candy Crush [Free] and Clash of Clans [Free] may be ruling the top charts in the App Store, but it's hard to argue that there isn't a bigger game release than an entry into the Infinity Blade series. Since the series' introduction in 2010, Infinity Blade [$5.99] and Infinity Blade II [$6.99] raised the bar as to what people thought was possible for iPhone games, both graphically and mechanically; and with the announcement of Infinity Blade III at last week's iPhone Media Event, the bar looks to be raised again.
As you prepare your body for Infinity Blade III though rigorous screen swiping drills, we here at TouchArcade thought it might be appropriate to prepare your mind by offering story summary of what has happened in the series thus far. We aren't talking about the Great American Novel here, but there is no question that the Infinity Blade mythos grew significantly over the course of the first two games; and given what we have seen of the third game, the trilogy's finale is the most story-packed installment yet.
What follows is a high-level view of the Infinity Blade story based on the two iOS games. Yes, there are two digitally available Infinity Blade novellas, Infinity Blade: Awakening [$2.99] and Infinity Blade: Redemption [$2.99], but it's hard to nail down what parts of those stories are canon and which parts are creative liberties taken by author Brandon Sanderson. There are too many conflicts with the games' stories to fold the books in cleanly. The books do, however, serve as a great way to flesh out the world of Infinity Blade and, if you enjoy the story of the games, you should check them out. They don't take long to read.
Before Infinity Blade
Not much concrete is known about this time, unfortunately. Infinity Blade Dungeons, the action RPG announced in 2012, was supposed to flesh out this period (specifically: the story of the forging of the Infinity Blade), but it was cancelled earlier this year. Here is what we know about this time period:
It's unknown if The Deathless (the immortal race of beings that rule the world of Infinity Blade) started out on this world, or are aliens that showed up later, but we do know that they have been tyrants for as long as they have been around. They regard humanity as pets and use them in however they see fit. Because The Deathless are immortal, humanity has no recourse against them. This is where the Infinity Blade comes in.
The Worker of Secrets, a Deathless himself, knows more about his species than anyone else and, using that knowledge, forges a blade that can cause permanent death to a Deathless once it is powered up.
We aren't sure why he created something that could kill him, but the general thinking is that he wanted to rule all the other Deathless. And what better way than to rule than to scare your opponents with the one thing they never used to fear: death.
At some point, with the help of a Deathless named Ausar, Raidriar (The God King), steals the Infinity Blade from The Worker of Secrets. He and Ausar seal The Worker of Secrets in a prison known as The Vault of Tears. Only the blood of a Deathless can free him and, since The Worker wished only to rule The Deathless, no Deathless want him free.
Infinity Blade opens with you in the Throne Room of Raidriar (in this game known only as The God King). After you slay his lackey in the tutorial, you fight The God King and lose. He drives the Infinity Blade into you, says that maybe your heir will be stronger, and leaves you to die on his floor. It is then that the game begins.
20+ years later, you play as the son of that warrior, again trying to slay The God King. You make your way through The God King's castle, unlocking new armor and weapons as you go, ultimately returning to the throne room and to another battle with The God King. Each time you fail, you return the castle play as the son of the warrior from the previous play through. Chances are you will go through a dozen sons before finally defeating The God King. And when you defeat him, driving the Infinity Blade into him and watching him die on the floor, you walk up to his throne and activate what looks like a beacon, showing the character (and the player) that The Deathless posses technology that is far beyond that of what everyone else has. This is the end of the first Infinity Blade game.
Book Note: It is never mentioned in the game, but there seems to be some importance to the other things the character does while in The God King's castle. Once you obtain the Infinity Blade through the in-game store, you gain access to the basement of the castle and meet four Deathless down there, one of which is in a mech and claims to be part of your bloodline. Killing them rewards you unique items, but their death may be more story important than initially presented.
Between Infinity Blade and Infinity Blade II
This portion of the story is confined almost completely within the first book, Infinity Blade: Awakening. As we mentioned before, it's hard to fold the book's story cleanly into the overarching canon, but we will talk about the parts of the book that don't conflict with any currently revealed story. That will make more sense in a moment.
The first thing you learn reading the book is that The God King isn't dead. Even though he was killed by The Infinity Blade, he survived and his QIP (Quantum Identity Pattern - think "futuristic soul") was transported to his rebirth chamber, where he was re-implanted back into his body. The reason he survived was because The Infinity Blade was not powered up prior to his death. Powering up the blade involves killing Deathless, and The God King (known going forward as Raidriar) has killed a lot of Deathless. Raidriar does a little math, adding in the three Deathless killed in his own dungeon, and Raidriar himself, and comes to the conclusion that The Infinity Blade is powered up, meaning it is able to cause permanent death to the Deathless. Raidriar sets out to reclaim the blade.
The character, now known as Siris, returns to his home town victorious. The town had, apparently, been sending sacrifices to The God King for millennia in order to keep the town safe from his, and other Deathless', wrath. Now that The God King is dead, and the blade every Deathless fears in the hands of one of their own, the towns people become very scared for their safety. It is decided that Siris should leave as to not draw more Deathless to their town and region. Siris, with no place else to go, decides to return to The God King's castle to search for more clues. There he is stalked by a mysterious robot who seems both interested in protecting him and making sure he doesn't discover things.
In The God King's castle again, Siris starts looking for answers. He finds out that The God King is not dead and that he was using Siris' bloodline to power up the Infinity Blade. He had hoped that killing Siris would power up the sword completely. Siris is also attacked in the castle by a woman, Isa, who mistakes him for The God King. She too is after the Infinity Blade, and after a battle that she finds impressive, she decides that Siris is more useful alive. She says she no longer has interest in retrieving the sword. Siris is appropriately suspicious.
The two set off to find The Worker of Secrets who, Siris has learned, forged The Infinity Blade. They do not know where he is, but Isa thinks that Saydhi, another Deathless, may. If Siris can defeat her gladiators in combat, he can ask her any question he would like. So, Siris and Isa head for Saydhi's compound. They are followed by the mysterious robot.
Here is where things get messy. The encounter with Saydhi actually serves as the prologue portion of Infinity Blade II. The problem is that the encounter in the book plays out a bit differently than the encounter in the game. In the interest of keeping everything chronological, we will move on to Infinity Blade II and we will add a Book Note after the prologue section that talks about what happens in the book.
Infinity Blade II
Infinity Blade II opens with Siris and Isa arriving at Saydhi's compound. Siris accepts the challenge and defeats all of Saydhi's gladiators through the tutorial portion of the game. When he finally gets a chance to ask Saydhi where the Worker of Secrets is, she grows angry. She asks him how he knows about The Worker, but Siris just waits for his answer. She finally tells him that The Worker is imprisoned in the Vault of Secrets, but that he will never reach him. With that, she attacks.
She realizes too late what sword he is using, and she pays for it with her life. Satisfied, Siris turns to leave but finds The God King and his Knight standing behind him. The God King calls Siris "Ausar" and uses magic to take back the Infinity Blade. Siris wants to fight The God King again, but The God King does not oblige. As The God King is about impale Siris on the Infinity Blade, Isa appears on a nearby rooftop and shoots Siris in the head with a poison dart, killing him.
Siris awakens later in a rebirth chamber and starts to realize the awful truth: he is a Deathless. Armed with that knowledge, he makes his way to The Vault of Tears.
Book Note: In the first book, Siris awakens in the rebirth chamber with both Isa and the mysterious robot waiting for him. The robot, TEL, reveals to him that he is Ausar, and that he is a Deathless. Isa explains that she killed him so that The Infinity Blade could not, preventing his permanent death. When asked about the events of the first game, TEL explains that The God King wished to power up the blade and was using Siris to do it.
Each time Siris would die, TEL would take his body back into the town, into the rebirth chamber, and would rebirth him. He would also alter Siris' memories so that he thought he was the son of the previous warrior, and needed to avenge his father's death. The town was in on the ruse, but said nothing because they feared that upsetting the ritual would upset The God King.
When asked about the Deathless in the dungeon that claimed to be a member of Siris' bloodline, TEL explains that there was a rebirth where he didn't properly reprogram Siris' memories. Siris went on to fall in love with a woman in town, got married, and had a kid. The child would later pledge his allegiance to The God King.
We don't know how much of this is canon and how much is creative liberty, but it is obvious that Siris knows who TEL is as he would appear in the second game after the 1.3 patch. He also would be the end of a story path that reinforces more of what is mentioned here, but because this exchange didn't actually happen in the game, we have relegated it to a footnote.
Siris arrives at The Vault of Tears and starts to go to work to free The Worker of Secrets. Unaware of how the The Vault is locked, Siris heads to the top of the tower, and to the main lock in the hopes of unlocking it. At the top of the tower he meets his first Deathless, Thane.
Thane refers to himself as the "First Blood of the Deathless, High Lord of House Ix, and Shield of The Great Pact." He doesn't recognize Siris at first. They battle, and when Siris goes to unlock the Blood Sentinel's locks, Thane tells him that the process will kill him. Siris responds by telling him that he is immortal, and then it clicks for Thane. He asks "Ausar?" before Siris plunges his hand into the lock, killing himself in the process.
When Siris awakens in the rebirth chamber he realizes that he must unlock all the Blood Sentinel locks before trying to unlock the Vault itself. Subsequent travels through The Vault of Tears result in each of the three Blood Sentinel locks being opened. Siris first has to defeat the lock's guard (some of whom recognize him) and then he has to die to unlock it.
Depending on the path the player takes, Siris can open up an area by collecting a set of Vile Armor. If Siris wears the Vile Armor in a specific room, an option for a new path appears. TEL will appear and plead with Siris to not follow that path, but if Siris does, he will find a statue of him and a woman locked in embrace. While it is a good memory at first, the situation turns sour when Siris remembers that the woman he loved saw the monster he was turning into and something happened. It isn't explained fully, but TEL tells Siris that he had instructed the robot to keep his future self out of this room as it would bring about too much sorrow. Siris agrees.
Once Siris has unlocked all the Blood Sentinel locks, he travels back to the top of to tower where Thane is waiting for him. Siris and Thane fight again, and Siris wins again. Having no other locks holding The Vault closed, Siris's blood now unlocks The Vault, rather than being killed by it.
When Siris approaches The Worker of Secrets, Thane appears again and tries to kill Siris. The Worker, manipulating something on his wrist, is able to disrupt Thane's QIP (remember, think "futuristic soul"), and grants him permanent death on the floor of the vault.
The Worker refers to Siris as "Ausar" and calls him his friend. He thanks Ausar for rescuing him and marvels at how Ausar doesn't remember anything. He tells Ausar that in order for him to escape, another Deathless must take his place. What better Deathless than the one who betrayed them both: Raidriar. Siris heads back to Saydhi's palace to confront and capture The God King.
The next sequence is fun to play. A gauntlet of warriors before a final face off with The God King, but not a great deal happens story wise. Let's fast forward to returning to The Vault of Tears with Raidriar in tow.
Upon arrival, The Worker thanks you for your help freeing him, and it is then that he reveals his true motive. He was imprisoned in The Vault of Tears by you (Siris, Ausar, whatever) and Raidriar, and he intends to lock you both in there while he, with the powered up Infinity Blade, carries out his original plan: World Domination. The game closes with you and Raidriar being closed into The Vault and, after a post credits sequence, Isa approaching the Vault compound.
Between Infinity Blade II and Infinity Blade III
While it is possible to give you a bit of what happens in between the game thanks to the second Infinity Blade book, Infinity Blade: Redemption, doing so would spoil the prologue of Infinity Blade III. It's a catch 22 seeing as the book undoubtedly has additional context for everything that happens in the prologue, but we will be directly spoiling the first hour of Infinity Blade III.
So, in the interest of keeping everything as fresh as possible, the plot synopsis ends here. Siris (Ausar) is locked in The Vault of Tears with his old adversary, and even older friend, The God King (Raidriar). What kind of wacky adventures will these two get into?
We will have to stay tuned for Infinity Blade III, launching in the very near future.