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Game Dev Story Review: You're Fired!

Posted on Friday, October 22 @ 18:28:19 Eastern by
I found the mogul in me over the past week. The Schrödinger's box has been a huge hit and my games have come within single points of perfect scores. Despite my initial effort and failure at channeling the development industry's Satan, my journey in Game Dev Story has come to a successful end.

I've long been a against the idea that the iPhone is capable of even remotely supporting a "great" video game. I've really love Mirror's Edge on the iPhone, but that's primarily because I love the IP. Game Dev Story is a totally original work by a Japanese company. There's so much to love, and so little time to soak it all in.

Probably the best aspect of Game Dev Story is the parody contained within. No real-world company is left untouched. During awards show sequences, game titles flash by quickly. I was always left wanting to see what title lost to "Panic the Prairie Dog." When a new console is available to develop for, you don't care about developing for it, you care about what it's called.

All of the micro management is actually a lot of fun. Most menu inputs go through quickly, and then you sit back and watch the money roll in. Even if your games are getting low scores, the consumers are nice enough to buy in and generate some collateral for your next project. Why can't all of us gamers be so kind to developers just starting out?

The game also progresses nicely, opening up more development options, genres, themes, and even allowing you to start your own console or generate a sequel. For an iPhone game, there's a surprising amount of depth in Game Dev Story.

Even the graphics are charming for their 16-bit quality. Your little devs run around, ask for development directions, and even get modest raises when you level them up. Even as you move from office to office, little changes start to become more noticeable the more time you spend them. Try squinting to see the miniature, 16-bit booth babes for your yearly showing at the Gamedex conference you hired to attract more visitors.

If someone could point me to further iPhone games of depth, maturity, and charm as Game Dev Story, I might be inclined to change my opinion of this thing I carry around in my pocket every day. There's so much to say about Game Dev Story, I amazed at how much I'm playing it even after a full week.

For an iPhone app, $3.99 is a pittance for this much content. All of that doesn't matter though, because my mini mogul is interested in raising the prices consumers pay per game.

A-
+Amazing amount of depth for an iPhone game
+Great price
+Run your company the way you want to
+Graphics are charming
+Parody is sincere and actually funny
-Still some small limits as an iPhone game.

[Game Dev Story iTunes Link]


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