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Helsing’s Fire HD

£1.79

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5

One of the best iPhone puzzlers is now one of the finest iPad games. Just buy it and thank us later.

Helsing’s Fire HD Review

by on July 8, 2011

We love iOS gaming, but we fully admit our hearts sink a little every time we see yet another copycat game arrive on the App Store. With such innovation in Apple’s hardware, it’s disheartening when developers rip off existing concepts rather than attempting to create something new. Still, perhaps this just leaves the path clear for games such as Helsing’s Fire, which provides a unique puzzle mechanic and elevates the game to classic status by dressing it in beautiful graphics, adding precision controls and finishing things off with a healthy dollop of humour.

The plot centres around the ‘implacable Professor Helsing and his assistant Raffton’, who travel to the Shadow Blight to defeat Dracula and his evil horde. Over four worlds of 30 levels, you battle 15 different monster types with the cunning use of a torch and coloured tonics. The puzzle mechanic is simple but ingenious: the torch illuminates monsters in a room, but some will be hiding in shadows. You then use coloured tonics to destroy like-coloured monsters or their shields that are in the light. Get the colour wrong for a foe and it gains a shield of that colour. You must carefully use torch placement to eradicate monsters before your tonics run out. Later levels also keep you on your toes with enemies that fight back, forcing you to rapidly move your torch around the screen.

This alone would make for a recommendation, but Helsing’s Fire takes things further. When you’re done with the main storyline, you can battle higher difficulty levels (with new puzzles), an endless survival mode, and an online bounty mode, where you play preset levels online for virtual money and leaderboard fame. And to round things off, this is one of the few games in existence that made us eager to watch between-level cut scenes, with Helsing and Raffton bantering with foes in a brilliantly illustrated and amusing comic-strip-like manner akin to Mike Mignola’s Hellboy.

There’s little to dislike about Helsing’s Fire HD. If pushed, we’d admit that the action elements get in the way of some of the puzzles, rather than enhance them, and end-of-world boss-fights are more tedious than exciting. However, even the fact that this HD version is merely an enlarged iPhone game sits well with us (for once), because the extra screen space gives the gorgeous graphics room to shine and enables you to place torches with greater precision. Helsing’s Fire HD is enthralling, amusing, engaging and hugely enjoyable.

Download this app: Helsing’s Fire HD

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Review courtest of Tap!

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