It’s a loooooooong way down!
In Swift Revenge, the evil Doctor Crow has destroyed (or at least done a nice bit of damage to) the floating island home of the heroic bird, Swift. Though Jedi may shun the concept, Swift will gladly tell you that revenge is for the birds.
But how does he get revenge? By flying after Doctor Crow! Or falling. Falling with style? Basically, most of the game involves diving after your enemy, which leads to auto scrolling stages that move downward as Swift remains at or near the top of the screen. Lots of debris, enemies, and obstacles get in the way, though, so you’ll have to either dodge or destroy them to get through.
At the end of each stage is a boss battle against Doctor Crow, who will attack you from his flying ship in a variety of ways. Once you’ve defeated him, some time travel shenanigans take place and you’re sent through a time warp, requiring the device to be turned horizontally as you gather up Crow’s dropped coins and try to ram his ship before time runs out.
Movement is performed by tilting the device left or right, which works well for the most part, but there are times when it just doesn’t feel up to the task of extremely tight or narrow dodging or evasion, leading to a penalty and restart from the last check point. During the time warp chases, you have to tilt the phone up and down, and it feels a bit less responsive there. Thankfully, these portions are more like bonus stages and there doesn’t seem to be any penalty for not getting all your licks in (which is good, because we usually only got one or two).
The concept above could probably have sufficed for a 99 cent iPhone game, but the developers didn’t stop there. Each stage after the first carried a time travel theme with it, taking you to different periods throughout history. Enemies, obstacles, and such change accordingly, though they don’t often tend to act differently.
Besides providing some nice changes to the music along the way, each new time period also comes with a special power-up. Swift’s standard attack is ramming speed, but in the west, he gets a cowboy outfit with a pistol, and a knight’s armor with a sword in medieval times. Each weapon has its own nuances and quirks, and they can not only be upgraded (pistol to shotgun, for example), but they also carry over into new time periods as well. So if serving justice with a blade of steel isn’t working for you, maybe slapping some leather will.
The game is fairly challenging, and seems firm but fair. At least, for the most part; on occasion, they like throwing some occasional obstacles in your way that feel like they are nigh impossible to avoid. You can usually formulate a plan through repetition, such as picking an alternate route or the right weapon for the job, though weapon pick-ups seem to be randomized. As a result, your game plan can get screwed over because the pistol appeared on the right side of the screen when you were expecting it on the left, though you’re not without other means with which to improvise.
Overall, Swift Revenge is a fun addition to the App Store. It has enjoyable characters with amusing dialogue, some nice music, and is overall fun, if a little frustrating at times. If you don’t mind a game with a bit of bite, then pick this one up.