Lords of the Fallen Mobile Review
The mobile version of Lords of the Fallen is an entertaining action RPG that ultimately falls short of revolutionizing the LotF formula for a new audience.
Overall, if you're a fan of the monsters and the environment of the original Lords of the Fallen, which released in 2014 (and $10 is no big deal to you), it this mobile iteration will be worth picking up to play on your bus ride to work -- or however you consume mobile gaming.
Unfortunately, for the rest of us, there is nothing particularly special about this iteration. Though the graphics are great, the combat is mediocre and the crafting is uninspired. Let's take a look at why.
The Lords Are Looking Good on Mobile
The graphics for Lords of the Fallen on mobile are stunning and the monsters look great. Half of your incentive to play through the game will be to see what kind of behemoths Deck13 Interactive has waiting for you in the next part of the castle. Their designs are unique and their animations are fluid.
The game is similar to Infinity Blade and Chaos Rings in a number of ways, graphics and design included.
Lords of the Fallen has a darker nature than most games, and its mobile version has stayed true to this vision. The lighting and grungy detail really make this a sharp, beautiful game.
There is no free-roaming, as this is a gladiator style ARPG. Much of your feel for environment and depth of world will come from short cut scenes that show your character ambling around the halls. Surprisingly, it was easy to start looking forward to these. These snippets are a great way to get a glimpse of the world and how the characters move through it.
All in all, the graphics and design hold this game together.
Crafting in Lords of the Fallen is Uninspired
Crafting in Lords of the Fallen is terribly unoriginal and somewhat pointless. The player is rewarded a bunch of random, obscure loot from each monster they defeat or chest they open, and somehow these body parts and roots (or whatever) can help you upgrade your weapons and craft potions.
It's possible someone with a deeper understanding of the lore would appreciate this system, but as a new player it mostly just obscure. "Yes, thank you for this heart, I will treasure it..." maybe?
The player could also just not bother paying attention to this static loot collection method and buy the upgrades and potions with their in game currency. Don't forget (while you do manage to pick some up along the way) that you can buy that currency with real money. Don't. Forget.
Why is there a cash shop in a mobile game that already costs $10?
Once you've accumulated enough goopy parts or in game coins, you can merge lower level versions of your equipment with higher level versions, or buy a new piece of equipment -- and that seems to be about it.
As for additional RPG elements, besides linear leveling they don't appear to exist.
Combat in Lords of the Fallen Mobile is Entertaining, but Lacking
The combat is mediocre. The combo options are a nice addition, but technically speaking, it was difficult to rely on the more complicated stuff to work properly. Your attack options include hack up, right, and left, while trying to pull off combos or (and this is a real bum to the combat flow) tap a spot on the screen as fast as you can when prompted.
Defending is a little more complicated, with options for dodge, parry, and block. These each will stun the opponent after three successes (parry only takes one), and you'll find yourself relying on this mechanic possibly more than any other in the game.
Each character does have magic available to them, and spamming these is a no brainer because it appears that the player can't take damage while casting.
The end result, especially when things start to get more difficult, is a block - slash - magic repeat type of game. Even with additional characters or equipment it doesn't seem necessary to change the tactics up at all.
There are a few button and swipe prompt scenes, but these don't really add anything to what is already boring combat. Two of the several I played glitched out anyway.
The game has a lot of shine, but subpar combat and missing RPG elements make it a tedious endeavor. At a lower price point, it would have been easier to give this mobile action RPG a higher score.
The Lords have just fallen.