Developer: Appy Entertainment, Inc.
Price: $0.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★★
Game Controls Rating: ★★★☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★★★

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Overview

FaceFighter begins with your intriguing decision to learn the way of Appy Fu. Shrouded in mystery and danger, you must fight friend or foe as you seek to learn the Way, leading you to your first enemy, Big Ben.

The animations are entertaining, the sound effects are good, and it’s a lot of fun to watch Big Ben’s face swell and move to the rhythmic beating of your fists, feet, and… monkey wrench. The secrets are surprising and killer to watch. Children of all ages will enjoy this (mine did).

1appy

Game Play

The game play is really simple. On your fight screen you’re presented with four buttons, left & right punch, kick, and block. That’s it. There’s also a ball at the bottom center of the screen that fills with a magical juice. This ball, when full and pulsing, grants you the power to wield a monkey wrench with which to pummel your enemy. There’s an unrealistic, but disturbingly enjoyable clanging sound when you hit your enemy’s face.

14beholdthemonkeywrench

The first couple of times I played the game I tried strategy. Strategy, while encouraged, is simply a waste of time. Blocking be damned, I consistently beat my foes simply by flinging my fists and feet in a rapid blur of violent fury. This ‘strategy’ proved successful in even the hard level. Upon knocking down my enemy three times I was awarded with the KO screen and advanced to the next battle.


Features

Once Big Ben was defeated I looked for my next enemy to battle as I began my way to learning The Way. I couldn’t swipe to choose my next enemy. Upon closer investigation I discovered I needed to create new enemies. So, being the responsible man, husband, and father that I am, I took photos of my wife and children and turned each of them into a deadly foe. Upon my eldest son’s request (by eldest I mean 5), I took a photo of our TV, aptly named it Television, and beat the crap out of it to everyone’s enjoyment.

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FaceFighter can be challenging enough for people who want to develop a real strategy, but it was also easy enough on its appy slappy level that my three-year-old son successfully beat it. So this is fun for the whole family… well, at least the male members of the family… and probably small girls because they don’t know they’re not supposed to like that stuff yet.


Strengths

The graphics on this game are really good. The fighting action ran smoothly on my first gen iPhone and besides an occasional crash on starting a fight (which may be my own fault because I’m running GM iPhone 3.0) there were no issues. Sound effects are also great. They are cartoony, but full and rich.

The surprises to me were finding the monkey wrench bonus weapon and the finality move. I’ve already mentioned how the wrench is invoked, and the Immortal Judgment fatality is used by pressing the flashing rock button after the last KO.

17immortaljudgment

Areas of Improvement

There were not many directions in this game. It’s not a huge deal, but some light reading on the bonus stuff would have been nice, though I would have lost that delightful surprise of finding a new way to beat my enemy. While there are only four buttons, I did find it a bit difficult to tap them consistently. It does get better with time, but I’m not a big fan of buttons on a touch screen game.

I was also somewhat disappointed by the storyline introduced at the beginning of play. Upon defeating my first enemy and discovering I needed to create more, I realized that there was no goal or end to this game. It’s simply a game to hit an opponent and create new ones. To inject my own purely subjective opinion here, some may find it disturbing that all future enemies are people you will know and love… unless you can convince the local bully to let you take his picture.


Summary

In spite of its shortcoming of having no goal or end, this is a fun game. My children and I enjoyed it. The facial expressions are funny. The sound effects are enjoyable. I would classify this as a Monty Python game. You can watch The Holy Grail once, maybe twice, by yourself and after that you have to have other friends and alcohol involved to keep it entertaining, and thereby becoming more enjoyable than your first solo experiences.

You really need to get FaceFighter so that you can fight some faces. It doesn’t even really have to have a face. Your friends will thank you.

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