Saturday, May 26, 2012

Mobile Game Review: Mass Effect Infiltrator for Android

Mass Effect Infiltrator for Android reviewed on the Transformer Prime.


Mass Effect Infiltrator is a third person shooter which was released for Android and iOS. Despite the less than stellar ending of Mass Effect 3, this mobile game Prequel is well worth the $6.99 it cost to buy it, either for it's own sake, or as an addition to the aforementioned game. You have to hand it to the developers, they did a good job in the game play and a decent job on the story. I was a little disappointed to find the game did not have an option for me to use my PS3 controller, but the way they programmed the game to work with the touch screen interface assuaged me of my disappointment very quickly.

Background & Cross Platform Integration

In this prequel, you play the part of Randall Ezno, a Cerberus agent. You start by being dropped on a planet to retrieve intel. Intel is an important thing in this game because the intel you collect can be used for one of two things. You can either cash that intel in for credits that you can redeem for weapons and equipment upgrades or you can apply them towards your Galactic Readiness Rating in Mass Effect 3. The thing I liked about the game is it wasn't just one or the other. Each time you go to the store to redeem your intel you have a choice. What is more, once you have completed the main game for Infiltrator, you'll improve a War Asset in Mass Effect 3. How you connect the two games is through Origin Mobile, which EA games has recently created to replace the EA Master accounts. I got a registration email saying that EA is working to integrate Origin into more of their titles, so this means more fun for cross platform gaming!

Game Play

But on to the game play. Unlike with other mobile games I have played with the touch screen interface, Infiltrator was impressive. At no point did my fingers get tired from being pressed into an unyielding touchscreen surface. To the contrary, I had a hard time putting the game down once I got use to the control methods. Oh, and the best bit! You can play the game according to your own style. It isn't just a duck and fire from cover game. Granted, there were points where I had to do that to get to the next level, but the game was designed to allow you to choose your own style and feel. The upgrade options go nicely with that feel.

To control the game, the left hand side of the screen is for movement and the right is for view. The feel of the game is very zippy when I played it with the Transformer Prime. If you want the game to be more or less sensitive to your touch, you can customize that in the settings as well as add Inverted Y control and a few other goodies. I turned on the subtitles to I could play with low sound so as not to disturb my wife.

Sniper Rifle
The blue brackets tell you your target options.
The aiming and firing is automatic. At first I had misgivings about that. You tap the enemy and the aim tracks onto them. But they don't make it completely auto. You still have fine aiming control which you manage with your right hand. As the game play progressed, I couldn't help but appreciate that added feature since it meant I spent more time focusing on the game and less on trying to hit the stupid enemy like in other mobile games like Shadow Gun or Modern Combat 3. The auto fire is obnoxious when you get your weapons more upgraded because cancelling a shot before the clip is out involves having to switch weapons. Still, over all I would give the game play at least 4 stars because I didn't have to fumble (much) when I was learning the interface and during game play.

Switching weapons and using biotics was a breeze. The cloak function is in the lower right hand corner of the screen in easy reach. The other biotic controls are in the upper left hand corner accessible with an easy swipe down and to the right. The weapons selector was in the opposite right hand corner and accessible with a down and leftward swipe. You get bonuses called Style if you kill multiple enemies with one clip in combo like fashion. The other way to earn style points is to kill each opponent with a different weapon (aside of course for those killed in combos). If you repeatedly kill with the same weapon you loose style points which is a subliminal way of making you switch weapons often and makes the game play more dynamic. You start with a battle rifle and a shotgun. As you earn credits you can upgrade the weapons and add a sniper rifle and beam weapon as well as different biotics, abilities and armors.

Each combat sequence is rated in 3 parts with a potential for 3 stars each. The first is style, which was covered above. The second is Time. The quicker done, the better. The final is Health. A little self explanatory. If you get 3 stars in all 3 areas you are rated Veteran. Get 1 stars in any of the areas and you are rated Soldier. Get 1 star in any of those areas and you are rated Novice. Aside from credit bonuses, you get additional rewards for in Mass Effect 3 if you get the Veteran rating in all levels. You can go back an replay levels at any time and your upgrades are retroactive so you can use those sweet upgrades to kick some serious butt.

Like with Mass Effect 3, you have the option at key points to choose whether to be a Paragon (good) or a Renegade (bad). This influences the game play somewhat.

Bonus Game Play

Once the main game is over, you have the option to play bonus games as an escaped prisoner within the  Cerberus facility in which part of the game is based. Game play is the same as with the other except you don't have the biotics and you start with just a battle rifle and shotgun like the beginning of the main game. The absence of the biotics makes the game all the more interesting and fun.

Maturity Rating

This game is rated PG-13 (Parental Guidance for ages under 13) for gun violence and some mature language. There is not sexual content.

Final Judgement

I have to hand it to EA, they made a winner here. Over all, I give this game 2 2/3 out of 3 Triforce. As mentioned previously, there were some things that were clunky and I feel the story was a bit thrown together, but all in all I would highly recommend this game to anyone with a dual or quad core tablet or phone. I would not suggest trying to play this on anything less since it will not be as smooth. Purchase the game at the Google Play Store for $6.99. Until next time, this is Justice signing out.

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  1. Very good review old chap!-COURAGE

  2. Thank you much. I look forward to reading some of your reviews.