Developer: Namco
Price: $5.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.0

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

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

I personally grew up playing Time Crisis in the arcade, blowing quarter after quarter trying to save the world from imminent doom. In the arcade, there really isn’t a game that is more satisfying than Time Crisis because you really get the feeling of being a true military gunslinger, killing everything on the screen without having to solve any puzzles or figuring out how to jump from platform to platform. In a nutshell, all Time Crisis games are the same… push through each individual screen before the time runs out or you die. There is usually a story line behind the scenes, such as a government coup or some kind of terrorist threat (or both), but the game really boils down to just killing bad guys as fast as you can.

Being the terrorist killing junkie that I am, I picked up Time Crisis Strike ASAP… you know, to blow some stuff up. The first thing I noticed was that the game is extremely slick, looking just as nice as the arcade game I was used to. There are a few different play options: Arcade, One Stage Trial, and Crisis Mission, which includes different time trials such as “Get ‘em All” where you have to kill a whole screen in 15 seconds. Playing the arcade mode throws you right into the game… for better or worse, there is no story, no setup, no power up guns to learn about, just get out there and kill. Depending on which difficulty you choose, you get between one and three continues to defeat all three levels of the game.

Where the game really shines is in the graphics and sound department. There is no lag or slowdown of any kind throughout, and the sound is almost exactly the same as the arcade… all very impressive stuff for an iPhone game. There were some parts of the game where the baddies blended into the background a little too well for my liking, but I suppose that if an enemy is wearing urban camo, the whole goal is for me not to see him.

My first problem with the game is the controls, but they are growing on me every time I play. Typically in the arcade version of Time Crisis, there is a foot petal that you press down to hide behind things in the game. Since the game puts you on a set path, each screen gives you something like a box or a car to hide behind so you won’t get shot by every oncoming bullet. Instead of the foot petal, the game has you either tilt the iPhone up or down in order to hide. The system works, but while the screen is tilted away from you, it is quite hard to see. Sitting in public bobbing your head up and down to prevent screen glare seems quite odd, so you may want to play this game in the privacy of your own home. Other than the tilt feature, the rest of the controls are very simple, just touch on the enemy they die.

The real problem that I have with this game is the lack of replay value. The game starts at a pretty fast pace and it never lets up, but without a story, that average complete game lasts me about 5 minutes or so. It is admittedly pretty fun, but after you’ve used your alloted amount of continues, the game is over. There is no way to throw in your last few quarters, you are done… just start over and try again. After about the fifth retry the linear path became stale and pushing past level one went from being a fun experience to becoming a chore.


Overall, this game is one of the most fast paced, exciting shooters in the iTunes store, but I’m not sure if that is saying too much. There are control limitations, such as the tilt to hide feature, but it is the limited replay value that will eventually leave this game collecting digital dust. If you are looking to be the next Jack Bauer or are just itching to pick up a fast paced, pretty game for the iPhone, pick this one up… just don’t expect it to be your favorite game in 2-3 days.

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