Hell Yeah! Pocket Inferno
A typical day for the prince of Hell.
When Sega released Hell Yeah! Pocket Inferno, we immediately assumed (wrongly of course) that it was a 2D platformer similar to last year's critically acclaimed Hell Yeah! Wrath of the Dead Rabbit, a gore-filled adventure with attitude that rekindled fond memories of the 16-bit Genesis days. Although this title retains its predecessor's art style, the game takes a page from the endless-runners populating the App Store, which is somewhat disappointing. That said, there's a modest amount of fun to be had, but you should expect plenty of frustration.
Similar to the original effort, you take control of Ash, devil rabbit and prince of Hell. Each of the game's 50 stages task you with guiding Ash through bit-sized levels aboard a jetpack, collecting tokens and blasting more than 30 different monsters. Traveling from point A to point B is simple enough, but the primary goal is to meet certain goals, like grabbing a set number of tokens or surviving without firing a single shot. On the positive side, this adds a welcome layer (however light) of depth.
One-hit kills Ash, so you should expect to die early and often. This wouldn't be so irritating if the controls were tight, but the jetpack floats around so much there's a learning curve that comes with figuring out how long you should press and hold the screen to ascend. It's especially problematic during boss battles, when Ash often gets in the path of enemy fire. The developers were apparently aware of how many restarts a person would go through, and automatically restart levels as soon as Ash dies, with no load times to speak of.
To be fair, Hell Yeah! Pocket Inferno isn't a bad game per se. The artwork sets it apart from the competition, and scoring three stars for each level will take a while. At the same time, there's little to distinguish the game from the numerous runners readily available, and we can't help but wish Sega would have just ported Wrath of the Dead Rabbit to iOS instead of publishing a companion title that for the most part is a mere shadow of its console counterpart. Worth $0.99, but let's face it, you've probably experienced a game like this before.
Review code provided by Sega.
What's Hot:Fifty stages to master, tons of unlocked items at the shop, attractive graphics similar to Wrath of the Dead Rabbit.
What's Not:One-hit deaths, difficult to get the hang of the jetpack, repetitive levels.