Iron Man 3: The Official Game is a mobile phone video game developed and published by Gameloft. The game was released on April 25, 2013, and is based on the film Iron Man 3. The game is an endless runner, where the player attempts to dodge objects to score points and complete the level and defeat villains from the Iron Man universe. The game received mixed reviews, with critics praising the core premise, but criticizing the games excessive in-app purchases and freemium-based time restrictions.
The game plays as an endless runner, similar to the game Temple Run. Many games of the genre play as a side-scrolling platformer game in 2D space; however, similar to Sonic Dash, the game is played both in 3D space behind the character, and while flying, without platforming elements.
The player controls Tony Stark in his Iron Man armor, maneuvering him through the game's three levels. Swiping the touchscreen moves the character, while tapping on characters results in shooting projectiles at enemies. Levels are randomly generated and play out infinitely, until the player suffers enough damage to kill the character. Missions, typically consisting of eliminating a certain number of enemies, or collecting a certain number of enemies, will reward the player with in-game currency to buy upgrades in weapons or armor. Alternatively, the player may chose to use real money to make in-app purchases in the game. If armor incurs too much damage, the player must start over, although a 30 second real time waiting period occurs while Iron Man's "armor is repaired".
The game initially offered 18 variations of Iron Man's armor to customize the player character, with another two being added in an update. Several Iron Man villains appear in the game as well.
The game's story takes place directly after the events of the Iron Man 3 film. Despite having destroyed all his armors, Tony rebuilds them as A.I.M. attacks. Tony fights the Crimson Dynamo, Living Laser, Ezikiel Stane, and M.O.D.O.K. Stane then kidnaps Pepper and reveals A.I.M.s plan to take over Stark Industries' network. Tony succeeds in defeating Dynamo, Lazer and Stane, but M.O.D.O.K. downloads his mind into newer bodies. When Tony defeats M.O.D.O.K., he fails to stop the latter from downloading himself into the Stark Industries mainframe. However, Tony erases the Stark Industries' network and traps M.O.D.O.K. in the old network and decides to rebuild Stark Industries into Stark Resilient.
The game was first announced by Gameloft in March 2013. The company opted to take a different approach to the game than they had with the Iron Man 2 video game adaption, which was a relatively poorly received action-adventure game, instead opting to make it an endless runner. The game's script was written by comic book writer Matt Fraction.
The game has received a rating of 58/100 from aggregator website Metacritic, based on 18 reviews, indicating mixed reviews. USA Today classified the game as "Not bad -- but not excellent either", praising the core gameplay, but complaining that the in-app purchases were unfairly priced and burdened progression, and that characters did not accurately reflect their film countparts. Game Informer echoed these sentiments, stating that they "appreciate how the random levels make each playthough feel different, and Tony’s banter... but I would have enjoyed Iron Man 3 more if it didn't artificially limit my access to Iron Man's best gear in a cheap attempt to reach into my piggybank. If you're a fan of endless runners and can put up with the game constantly asking you to post to Facebook or purchase more ISO-8, then you might find this a fun diversion while you wait in line to see Iron Man 3 in theaters. Gamezebo praised the graphics, calling it one of the "best-looking iOS games to have come out in the past year", but criticized the 30 second wait before starting a new game, calling it "a rather shady freemium gimmick". Digital Spy referred to it as "decent enough", recommending it mostly for Iron Man and comic book fans. Slide to Play referred to the game as initially fun, but that as the game progressed, "...certain obstacles feel ridiculously difficult to dodge– almost as though the game is tired of you playing." Touch Arcade criticized the graphics, stating that, while nice, created input lag, even without much action present on the screen, and that it "doesn't feel as finished as other Gameloft games. Technology Tell felt that the cost of the in-game purchases, and excessive wait time, would be a hurdle many would not be able to overlook.
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