The Princess Bride - The Official Game review: Inconceivable fun?

iOS; £2.99; Gameblend Studios

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The Independent Tech

Want to hear whether the new game based on Rob Reiner’s 1987 classic fairytale film is any good?

As you wish.

Featuring stills and sound clips from the movie, the new iOS game offers four levels, based on memorable scenes from the film. Each of those four are divided into five challenges (to unlock the last two, you must earn stars from the first pair by completing challenges – or pay). If you fail and want to continue, Miracle Max pops up and offers you a magic pill to continue (which you start off with five of, or for more, pay…no noble causes accepted).

The first game involves the scene in which Princess Buttercup jumps into the sea after being captured, and Vizzini warns her that the shrieking eels will attack if she doesn’t swim back. In the game, you must attack the eels before they reach the princess – it’s all about quick-fingered reactions – simple, but fun. You wouldn’t need Six Fingers to win.

The second sees you as Westley climbing the Cliffs of Insanity to catch up with Fezzik (who’s carrying Inigo Montoya and Buttercup). You must avoid obstacles such as falling rocks and seagulls by moving the device from side to side while negotiating his speed by tapping the screen. It’s good to control, and eventually gets more tricky, so expect to be Mostly Dead the higher you reach.

 

The third is you as Westley again, fighting Inigo Montoya in a sword battle. This is basically Fruit Ninja, but it has sword sounds. Highly addictive.

The fourth is the worst of the games, as you play as Westley fighting Fezzik. You simply swipe in the right direction to avoid his attacks, but Prepare to Die, as he will hit you, in a not very sportsman-like way.

Some challenges can be completed cumulatively – i.e. travel 500 metres up the Cliffs of Insanity, others you need to complete in one go – killing two of the ‘boss eels’, which takes some practice. 

After the four games we're told ‘free updates coming soon’, and with the amount of incredible scenes in the film, it shouldn’t be hard to create extra games. The Fire Swamp would be a goldmine for ideas – with balls of fire, quicksand, and Rodents of Unusual Size attacking. Not to mention the Battle of Wits with Vizzini and Iocane powder ("Have you ever heard of Plato? Aristotle? Socrates? ... Morons.", making an MLT sandwich, The Machine in the Pit of Despair, which sucks life out of Westley – plus a game where the others are helping him after his back-to-life recovery as they storm the castle.

While there are nods to scenes, characters, and quotes, it’s not like the movie, and it should be a free to play game due to being short and very basic at points. But it can be quaint - three of the four games are likely to keep you coming back for more. Even for an iOS game, at £2.99, it should offer a lot more than four games – so let’s hope the new updates are indeed free for those who purchase it, or fans will be left feeling anything but True Love for Gameblend Studios.

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