Version Reviewed: 1.0.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 4
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Everyone can agree that comic books are a fantastic source of entertainment. Those same people can also frequently agree that games are a great source of fun too. Square Enix have clearly put two and two together and thus created Imaginary Range - a game that's also a comic book. It's a curious mix and admittedly there are better games out there and better comic books too. That shouldn't dissuade interested parties however. After all, Imaginary Range is a great idea and it's free too.
The story provides the main focus here. While the artwork is of an extraordinary quality thanks to the artistry of Final Fantasy veteran Toshiyuka Itahana, the story doesn't quite hit the spot. It's interesting, offering a mixture of a 'monster destroying world' plotline along with a slight nod to Inception, but it feels too brief. There's a glimmer of hope with the ending of the comic stating 'To be continued?' so hopefully once the full series has been released, the story will become that bit more involving.
At various points within the 50 or so pages, mini games appear that need to be completed in order to progress. They're not the most compelling of games but they pass the time without detracting from the storyline. Besides some predictable hidden object segments, there are some simple block moving puzzles, a Flight Control clone section and also an arcade shooting section, similar to Space Invaders. Other interactive moments come about during the comic book panels themselves in which players have to remember to keep an eye out in order to collect up items in the background by circling them. Again, it's not obtrusive and keeps the interactivity ticking along just nicely without being excessive.
Completing the comic doesn't take long, only an hour at most, depending on the user's reading speed. Once completed, it's possible to read the comic by itself or play the games individually. As well as that, a gallery unlocks allowing players to browse more of the artwork - a nice touch for comic book fans. Annoyingly though, none of the app can be viewed in landscape mode which means some zooming and manoeuvring is particularly needed when using it on the iPhone.
Imaginary Range is pretty short currently but it's an interesting experience. While it's a bit of a jack of all trade and master of none, it's still well worth a look. The potential is great and hopefully Square Enix will soon be adding to the collection with new instalments. Oh and Final Fantasy fans will love the ending.