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Sacred Odyssey Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Chris Hall on February 10th, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: SOLID ADVENTURE
Sacred Odyssey is Gameloft's latest cloning, this time of Zelda. Like always, it has great graphics and deep gameplay, but it's just not quite the Nintendo classic.
Read The Full Review »

The Portable Podcast, Episode 71

Posted by Carter Dotson on February 8th, 2011


On This Episode:

  • Carter and guest co-host Blake Grundman discuss their excitement for EA's upcoming version of NBA Jam. As well, they discuss Gameloft's new game Sacred Odyssey: Rise of Ayden, and whether its freemium release model could pave the way for widespread adoption of this model by the rest of the industry. Finally, they discuss match-3/RPG hybrids, especially recent release Dungeon Raid.

  • Who We Are:

  • Host: Carter Dotson
  • Guest: Blake Grundman - 148Apps, Games Are Evil, The EvilCast
  • Music:

  • "Beatnes7 (Theme to The Portable Podcast)" by The Eternal - Download on iTunes here:

  • How to Listen:

  • Click Here to Subscribe in iTunes:
  • Click Here to Subscribe via RSS.

  • Listen on WRGT Radio every Friday at 4pm Central
  • Listen Here: [powerpress]
  • Apps Mentioned in this Episode:

    Gameloft Releases Sacred Odyssey to the App Store as a Freemium Game

    Posted by Carter Dotson on February 3rd, 2011
    iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
    Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: SOLID ADVENTURE :: Read Review »

    Since the early days of the App Store, users have gotten used to a two tiered app distribution model: the paid version which comes at a cost, but comes with a full range of features, and the free/lite version, which comes with a limited set of features, but comes as a free download. This model is in part thanks to the inability of apps to offer in-app purchases before iOS 3.0 was released, so Lite versions couldn't offer upgrades to full versions. Although developers and publishers have had the ability to offer a single version of games that are unlocked via a purchase in-app, no major release has dared to try to change up the working model, until now.

    Gameloft's new Zelda-inspired fantasy action/RPG game Sacred Odyssey: Rise of Ayden is being released to the App Store as a free download. The game, compatible with 3rd generation and up devices, gives you a small taste of the game before requiring you to pay $6.99 to unlock the full game in-app. Very few apps have tried the same trick so far - Time Crisis 2nd Strike HD, Astronut, and Tilt to Live HD being notable examples. This kind of model makes sense, theoretically - instead of confusing users by splitting the game into two different SKUs on the App Store, and making users go download a completely different app if they want to upgrade, you let them easily upgrade from a transaction in the app itself.

    The problem is if users will be willing to adjust to this new model that Gameloft is trying out. Gameloft is likely hoping that more people buy the game given that they can try the game out for no cost. However, will the in-app purchase model to unlock the full game confuse too many people, who are used to the free/lite model? Will the barrage of one-star reviews that Gameloft is likely to get from users who feel like they're being deceived by the in-app purchase to download the full game? This is a curious gambit from Gameloft, and it will be interesting to see how users react to it, and if future releases adopt a similar pricing model or not. If this is a success, this could be a potential sea change in the release structure of games on the App Store, or it could potentially doom the concept.