Bungie, the game studio behind the Halo series, celebrates their 20th anniversary this year, and to celebrate they held “Bungie Day” on July 7th. The day held a number of events, including a chance to play Halo Reach against some of it’s Devs.
For me, the best part of Bungie day was the release of Marathon 1 for iPad. We were promised the classic shooter series on Apple’s tablet, and now the wait is over. The game is a huge throwback to my start as a gamer. While I’m not old enough to have played it when it was released, I played it as a kid with my dad. It was the DOOM of Apple computers, and it really delivered.
The port of Marathon brings all the great parts back. The game itself is still solid, and extremely fun to play. It may just be my fond memories, I really enjoy playing the game. That doesn’t mean its perfect, however.
While many people will complain that the graphics are terrible, they look as good as they did when I played it years ago. If you want upgraded graphics, you can pick them up as an in-app purchase. You can also get “Master Chief Mode,” which gives you unlimited ammo, weapons, and even life.
My issues with the port come from its controls. It uses a stationary joystick for movement, and turning control on theater side near a pair of firing buttons. My biggest problem is that I can’t hold my iPad and manage to turn, move, and shoot all at one time. That makes it difficult to be highly successful within the game.
As a recap, Marathon 1 is a good free FPS with a high level of nostalgia. You could complain about the visual quality, but you can pay for better graphics. The biggest issue is the control scheme, and they need serious help.
App: Marathon 1
Score: 3/5 – Nostalgia without carefully thought out controls