Developer: Bulkypix
Price: $3.99
Version: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 4s

Graphics / Sound Rating: Rating: ★★★★½
Game Controls Rating: Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Replay Value Rating: Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Journey to Hell is a paranormal third-person shooter developed by Bulkypix. Although the game earns a lot of credit in my book for doing a pretty good job with its control scheme, presentation, and upgrade hooks, the game is also host to numerous technical problems that hold it back from being a completely enjoyable experience.

The game dumps players into a world “spiraling into decline, where all manner of demons are on the prowl to feed their appetite for human flesh.” Fortunately for this world, there are people around to fight back. Players of Journey to Hell play as a member of a secret organization called “Holy Shield” that is dedicated to fighting paranormal and supernatural threats to humankind. After this brief, introductory setup, the shooting begins.

If you think this sounds terribly cliché, you’re right. The developers even describe Journey to Hell as “cliché-packed.” The folks over at Bulkypix aren’t trying to tell a brand new story as much as they are trying to make a frantic, old school shooter like Doom or Painkiller, and they execute on this pursuit largely successfully, all while making it look pretty great too.

Each of the game’s levels will dump a character into an enclosed map where the main objectives are almost always centered around eliminating all enemies. As you kill wave after wave of nightmarish undead, you will be given additional objectives, but they are usually just geared toward leading you into another space to fight more monsters. All during this time, you will be doing a lot of circle strafing in your quest to stay alive while dispatching your foes.

While the action doesn’t vary too far from this basic formula of “kill everything,” Journey to Hell incorporates an unlock and upgrade system to give players the opportunity to change their character’s loadouts and abilities from mission to mission. With two playable characters and 30 different weapons, there are a lot of ways players can choose to mix up the action.

All of this being said, Journey to Hell isn’t as easy to recommend as it should be. While reviewing the game, I ran into a host of technical problems that included game crashes, frame hitches, and I even had some enemies and their attacks clip through the environment. These problems didn’t surface constantly, but they did occur often enough to detract from the experience.

Because of these issues, Journey to Hell is a hard sell in its current form, even though it seems to be a pretty solid action game otherwise.

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